Evergreen refuses to be called spoiled or pampered just because she’s the only girl in a rock band of four but sometimes… she really has no choice but to rely on one of them.
As the only female member in a fairly popular local rock band of four, Evergreen has heard most of the usual stupid comments.
“She’s probably dating one of them.”
“You’re so pretty, ever caused drama between the boys?”
“I bet your guys spoil you a lot, eh? You’re their princess.”
“You think she gets clingy? Maybe their girlfriends get jealous, eh?”
Being together for roughly five years and counting, she was used to them by now. She usually scoffs at those remarks. She knew how WRONG they were, anyway.
Laxus was never one to dote on anyone, except if they were really sick. Freed was always too busy either keeping Bixlow on a leash or getting Laxus out of trouble, sometimes doing both at the same time. Bixlow might try to cozy up to her sometimes, but he was more like an annoying younger brother in that sense, so it didn’t really count.
Evergreen had always prided herself in being independent, in never demanding that “her boys” coddle her. Yes, she regularly tucked herself beside Laxus, she liked how his arm around her shoulders made her feel safe whenever they had to navigate through crowds. Yes, sometimes she relied on Freed to deflect someone’s unsavory attempts to hit on her. Yes, maybe whenever Elfman wasn’t available, she would sometimes ask Bixlow to accompany her to go to places she didn’t feel comfortable going to alone. And yes, sometimes when some asshole just wouldn’t take ‘no’ for an answer, she would find whoever between the three was nearest in proximity and latch on to his arm. A blatant call for help, but always effective.
She’s not clingy, or indecisive, or baiting, or whatever judgmental crap people might call her just for having three guy best friends. She tries to stand up on her own as much as possible. It’s just sometimes, it was more practical, to rely on one of the boys. That was how their little unit worked. They look out for each other like all good friends do.
So yes, those comments were bullshit and sexist and maybe she should be above them, but they still get to her sometimes. They were annoying. And just really pissed her off.
Ever will never demand attention for the sake of demanding it.
She only ever asked for help if she really needed it.
That — that was what she repeatedly told herself as she tapped the ‘Send’ button on her phone and then waited for a reply.
‘no im not busy whats up’
‘Can you come over? I need to ask you a favor. I promise you can say no if it’s too much.’
‘Thanks. Just use your key.’
It took less than five minutes. There were two knocks on her front door, a voice saying “I’m coming in.”, the sound of a key unlocking the door, and the knob turning.
Laxus stepped inside, took one look at her, and said, “What the hell, are you alright?”
Evergreen knew she looked pathetic, sitting on the floor by the low table and hunched over her school projects, six different reference books, two mugs of coffee and a pitcher of water. Her hair was piled up in a bun with an ugly scrunchie, and she was wearing a very unflattering sweatshirt and sweatpants combo, all while hugging a big flower-shaped plushie.
But she powered through as best as she could, not giving Laxus time to complain about how godawful she looked. “I’m okay. Just. I know it’s a lot to ask, and I promise I’ll understand if you want to turn me down… I mean, I wouldn’t be asking you but Elf’s at Magnolia and you know Freed and Bix are away. I really should’ve prepared for this, but I completely lost track of the dates and I’ve been drowning in all these projects and—”
Laxus raised his hand, cutting her off quickly. “Okay, shit, stop apologizing. Calm down. I get it, just tell me what you need me to do.”
She looked down, biting her lip. “I… I just… Can you… I need some supplies.”
“What do you need?” he asked, painfully calm. And as if her aimed to catch her even more off-guard, he started to actually list things: “Pads? Tampons? Pain meds?”
She stared at him, internally screaming, torn between demanding how he automatically went into the conclusion that she was on her period, or just making nice and actually answering his question.
She settled for Option 2, because it seemed unfair to dwell upon Option 1 seeing as his conclusion was indeed the right one, anyway.
“Um, pads, for now. I… for pain meds, the pharmacy’s quite far, so I don’t think I should ask…”
Laxus shrugged. “I have my bike. Just tell me what meds to get. And what kind of pads, and what brand. And how many packs.”
Those statements were not ones she expected to hear from Laxus, ever. Never in her life had she imagined him asking her to specify details of her period supplies, somehow.
“Oh. Okay, sure. Yes, I’ll… do that.” she said, grabbing for one of her notepads to list the items down. “Are you sure it’s fine?”
“Yeah. Don’t worry ’bout it.” he said, completely nonchalant as he put his guitar case down beside the couch.
“I’m really not bothering you?” she asked, just to clarify again. Because it was all quite hard to process, still.
He’s been too calm about all this so far. It was a bit terrifying.
“Nah. I was just napping next door, anyway. And Freed won’t be home until 6.” he assured her, putting his jacket on and checking his pocket for his wallet, then his motorbike keys. “Want me to heat that up?”
She looked at him and blinked, then saw him nod towards the now-cool heating pad strewn over the rest of her things. “I-… Uh. Yes, please?”
Somehow, she never imagined Laxus Dreyar offering to re-heat her heating pad for her, either. She didn’t even expect him to know what the item was. Or what she used it for.
She moved to take the heating pad to hand it to him, but he quickly said, “Got it.” and picked it up, then headed to her tiny kitchen.
A few moments later, he was handing her a newly-warmed pad, and accepting her short shopping list, nodding as he read the items.
She thought he was done, that he’d finally tell her he’s off to buy her supplies, but instead he only looked over at her and asked, “Are you really comfortable over there?”
“Not… not really, but—”
He slipped the list in his pocket and walked around the low table to offer a hand. “Let’s get you to the couch. C’mon.”
At that point, Evergreen could only let him pull her to sit on the couch, grab a fluffy throw-pillow and place it on one side of the couch for her, help her lie down properly still somehow curled up against her plushie, and then ask if she needs a blanket, or if she preferred just adjusting the AC.
She said she was fine. He asked again. She answered again. And finally he left.
Evergreen could only thank small miracles that her cramps kicked in while he was gone.
It was silly, but those handful of times Laxus referred to her as ‘badass’ were some of her best moments and she didn’t want him to ever see her weak or miserable after that. So sue her, next to their fearless leader, she was the most prideful in their group.
He came back, admirably, in record time, with all of the items in Evergreen’s list in check, from the pain meds down to the correct brand-and-type of pads, and holy mother of—
“You bought chocolates?” she asked, blinking as he cleared space in the table for several packs of her favorite chocolate bars.
She had thought of asking him to buy some, but decided against it, not wanting to come off as too needy. Yet here they were anyway.
“Yeah, thought they might make you feel better.” he answered. “You wanna take the meds now or later?”
Evergreen had expected a couple of things when she decided to ask Laxus for help — but this scenario, Laxus Dreyar casually agreeing to help her deal with her period and being so damn good at it…
This scenario was not expected. At all.
She inwardly groaned, feeling a bit guilty that maybe she might have underestimated how Laxus handled stuff. It was easy to forget that she was a pretty sweet and considerate guy underneath the rough exterior, and that he showed that part freely when he really liked you.
He helped her take the pain meds. Waited as she went to the bathroom with the other supplies to clean up a bit. He even opened the wrapper before handing a chocolate bar to her when she asked for one. He offered to sit beside her. Didn’t budge when she curled up against him when cramps kicked in. Fell asleep holding her on the couch. All without question.
It wasn’t until much later, when she woke up without even realizing she had dozed off, that she thought to ask.
“Laxus, are you awake?”
“I am now.” came his mumbled reply.
“Sorry for making you do this.”
“Mm, don’t mention it.”
“Why does it look like you’re used to this?”
“Used to what?”
She squirmed a bit. “Um… Period stuff?”
He huffed at that. “You forget that I have a little sister.”
Evergreen cursed her tired, sleepy brain. Of course. How could she forget that?
“I’m really sorry for bothering you.”
“Stop apologizing. You’re the one Mother Nature gut-punched. I’m not gonna victim-blame.”
She couldn’t help but snort at that, trying to hold back her laughter. “Mother Nature’s gut-punch, huh?”
“Shut up. That’s how Erza calls it.”
He shifted a bit, but made no move to leave, so she just made herself comfortable curled up beside him again.
When Freed came home, he didn’t bat an eye at how his best friend and his boyfriend were cuddled together on the couch.
He simply said, “So what do you want for dinner? I’ll get started.”
Evergreen blinked, face flushed at being caught in a very cozy position with someone else’s boyfriend, and only managed, “Uh-… You-… It’s fine, Freed, I can do it, you guys should—”
“Nope, you’re staying put.” Freed said, hanging up his coat and sweater as he would in his own flat. He walked over to them and leaned down to press a quick kiss on Laxus’s forehead. He was answered with a soft pleased hum. Then he turned to Evergreen. “How ’bout I make your favorite?”
“That’s… that would be nice. Thanks.”
He smiled. After a quick assessment of the mess on the table, he picked up the empty chocolate bar wrappers and the mugs, then headed to the kitchen to get started on dinner.
Evergreen opened her mouth to say something but then Bixlow came in, grinning widely. “How’s it goin’, fam? I have ice cream!”
“Bixlow?” Evergreen blinked. “Wha-… Why?”
“Because ice cream is the best, Ever! Anyway, ice cream doesn’t need a reason.” Bixlow shrugged, also shedding his jacket. “I’ll get this to the fridge now.”
Evergreen couldn’t see them, but she heard the sounds of activity from the kitchen, Bixlow asking Freed if he needed help, and Freed in turn asking him to start chopping some vegetables.
She sat up a bit to look at Laxus. “You told them?”
“Nah, they must’ve felt it in your aura or something.” he said flatly.
She narrowed her eyes and frowned.
Laxus scoffed. “Of course I told them.”
She sighed. “You shouldn’t have. I can… I can handle myself. You guys could be doing more important stuff right now.”
“Huh. Yeah, now that you mention it. Let me get up now and kiss my boyfriend after a long tiring day. I’ll send Bix to take my place as your body pillow.”
She quickly nodded and moved to get off him. “Okay.”
“Christ. I was kidding. Get back here. I don’t wanna make dinner.”
Evergreen laughed at that, and she let him pull her towards him again. “Thanks for this. I mean it.”
“Stop being so nice. It’s scary.”
She smacked his chest playfully, held herself back from saying ‘I could tell you the same thing’ and only closed her eyes, just listening to his steady breathing and the sounds of dinner being made in the kitchen.
Again — those comments about her being a spoiled clingy princess or that her best friends coddled and pampered her on the regular were a load of crap.
But she would have to admit that sometimes… just once in awhile, she liked some attention and she cherished how they were more than willing to give it.
Man, I really love writing about the Raijinshuu too much.