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Author Topic: To Write is Human  (Read 586 times)

Re: To Write is Human
« Reply #15 on: November 14, 2019, 05:47:47 PM »
Jean was all too content to spend the rest of his time in the cadet corps alone. He didn’t come here to make friends- certainly not with kids like Eren Jaeger. He was here to just get through training and then head t o the MP. This was just a steppingstone he didn’t have to worry about. He didn’t need friends here, as helpful as they might be. The way Marco spoke only served to remind Jean of his self-made isolation and how much he truly missed talking to someone he trusted face to face. He was so alone here and despite all he had told himself, he still wanted to talk to someone.

It took a while for Jean to calm back down enough to talk again. He sat there silently, just listening to Marco as the other cadet offered up his comfort. He hated the compliments Marco was giving him, feeling as though there were false. Just more lies Jean used to convince the cadets that he should be there. He sighed, reaching up to rub his eyes with the back of his hands. He really needed to clean his damn hands eventually. “Anyone ever tell you that you’re too goddamn nice to people?” Jean asked, trying to desperately cling to whatever was left of his cocky persona.

He didn’t understand how someone as nice and sweet as Marco would end up here. He was a ray of sunshine for the rest of the cadets, keeping everyone steady and focused. He always seemed to be the one to go to when shit got bad- like some sort of mother hen for the rest of the boys. He had even managed to make the biggest asshole of the 104th look a little more human. “Why are you even bothering, Marco?”
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Re: To Write is Human
« Reply #16 on: November 17, 2019, 09:35:56 PM »
Perhaps it was the weight of their conversation, but Jean seemed almost weary now, sighing quietly as he rubbed at his face with the back of his hand.

Anyone ever tell you that you're too goddamn nice to people?

Marco smiled softly at that, confident it could only be taken as a compliment. "I'm pretty sure there's no such thing as too nice," he replied gently.

Why are you even bothering, Marco?

At that, Marco blinked with surprise, a little taken aback. "Bothering…? With you, do you mean?" He frowned faintly, puzzled. Did Jean somehow think he wasn't worth the time or effort it took to comfort him? For a moment, silence reigned, Marco giving the question due consideration. He gazed pensively down at the backs of his hands, the constellations of freckles sprinkled there both familiar and grounding. "Because you're hurting, Jean, and if there's anything I can do to help, I'm going to do it," Marco answered firmly once he found his voice, his honey-brown eyes lifting to Jean's face. His expression softened, and he looked almost mournful as he spoke on.

"You... You ever have one of those nights where sleep won't come, and it feels like you're the last person in the world left awake?" Nights like that were part of the human experience, Marco was sure, but that didn't make them any less soul-crushingly isolating and lonely. "Minutes tick by like hours, and it's just you, with your thoughts, with your sorrow…" He trailed off, his attention shifting to his bundle of letters, thinking of his mother, home alone. Did she suffer sleepless nights now that her only child had signed his life away to the military? It seemed depressingly likely. Marco brushed an envelope tenderly with his fingertips - one decorated with his mother's inky illustrations - then looked up at Jean. It felt like his heart was bared to the boy. "I think it's possible to feel like that during the day too. And I think, if people were just kinder to one another, a bit more understanding, and took the time to talk, this life would be easier for us all."

His own sense of vulnerability grew, the gentle heat in his cheeks telling him he was flushed. He felt oddly exposed, somehow, like he had perhaps said too much. Now seemed as good a time as any to help with those rogue splotches.

"Here, you've got a little ink on you - " Marco murmured, gesturing vaguely at his own face, before realising it would be easier on them both if he assisted more actively. Leaning across the table, he carefully brushed his thumb against Jean's warm cheek. It took a couple of light swipes for the smudge to fade away but, mercifully, it went easily enough.  Marco found he was glad of the distraction.
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Re: To Write is Human
« Reply #17 on: November 25, 2019, 09:08:13 PM »
There was a kindness Marco held, one that Jean had only ever experienced from his own mother. One that caught Jean off guard and made him homesick. He wanted to know more about the too kind cadet sitting in front of him. He was quiet as the other boy explained himself a little, eyes trained down on the wooden tabletop in between them. He wished it didn’t take crying over his dead dad for Jean to realize how nice Marco was, but here they were.

Because you’re hurting, Jean, and if there’s anything I can do to help, I’m going to do it.

Jean was always of the opinion that wanting to help strangers was a foolish endeavor. Marco was foolish for wanting to help him. Yet, Jean was still looking up, allowing himself to meet Marco’s eyes. Then the boy was talking about lonely nights. Jean knew lonely nights- was well acquainted with them. Those nights were practically every night after his father’s death. The cold that settled in his room as he spent what seemed like hours at the time, just staring up at the unfinished ceiling. Tracing the wooden support beams and just wondering how different things could be. Eventually, tears would form, blurring his vision until he either went to be or cracked. Cracked and sobbed until the morning hours.

Marco seemed to recognize how vulnerable he was allowing himself to be with Jean. Jean wondered for the moment if the moment was accidental, or if Marco was just genuinely like that. If Marco just wore his heart on his sleeve and allowed everyone to know where he stood. Jean had become so accustomed to guarding himself- building up walls so high that not even the colossal titan would be able to peak over. And here Marco was, bearing his heart to Jean and there was nothing for him to get out of it.

”Marco,” he started, finally clearing his mind enough to focus on speaking. ”You do realized who you’re being nice to, right? I’m not exactly the person people are flocking to for friendship.” He jerked away from the contact at first, expecting Marco to hit him or to do anything other than try to be helpful. He managed to still himself though, allowing Marco to get into his space and clean the ink off his cheek. He looked back down at the table; brows furrowed as he tried to process all that had just happened.
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Re: To Write is Human
« Reply #18 on: December 04, 2019, 11:10:40 PM »
Jean's words broke Marco's heart a little. Beneath the cocky, self-assured, capable exterior there gaped yawning wounds. The loss of a father, a mother in a quiet house, the weight of love and responsibility on young shoulders… but it didn't end with grief alone. Did Jean really think so little of himself as to imagine he wasn't worth someone's time?

The freckled cadet was glad that he had a moment to focus on wiping the ink from Jean's face. Seeing the boy flinch, Marco worked quickly, gently, withdrawing his hand as soon as evidence of the smudge was cleared. Kindness was something that cost nothing, something that didn't need to be earned. Pulling away, he settled back onto the bench.

"Uh, yeah. I know your full name now and everything," Marco smiled with gentle humour, though the furrow in his brow spoke of his concern for his fellow cadet. "There mightn't be a flock, but there's at least one, for what it's worth." There was a candidness to Marco, to his words. He clasped his hands, resting them on his letter paper, warm brown eyes trained on the cadet sitting opposite him.

"You don't ever have to be alone if you don't want to be. Anytime you need someone to listen, I'm here." The fact that he didn't know Jean all that well - though after this conversation, Marco could say with confidence he knew the boy from Trost at least a little better - did nothing to dissuade him, nor made the sentiment any less earnest. The thought of anyone suffering genuinely wounded him. And Jean… well, Jean had certainly suffered. "Even if it's the middle of the night. Even if you don't want to talk, if you just want company… dig me in the ribs, yeah?"
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