said_scarlett: (Default)
Faye ([personal profile] said_scarlett) wrote2012-12-09 10:47 am
Entry tags:

Holiday Ficlet Number 1! Dark Tower

Title: To Drive The Cold Winter Away
Fandom: The Dark Tower: Marvel Comics Canon
Pairing: Vaguely Aileen/Roland
Rating: PG-13, I guess
Summary: He had become as cold as the winter nights themselves, but not beyond all human caring...
Notes: This is a holiday giftfic for Lauren! And the best I could manage to ICly do anything for Ro and Aileen! I HOPE YOU ENJOY!



Down in the valley, the Christians were singing. It was some holy night for them, as well, but the celebration was foreign. Strange chants, strange prayers.

In the camp, Cuthbert had a fiddle and Jaime was singing an old ballad to keep the long dark at bay. Winter's Eve had come again, or so they all assumed. It was hard to tell. But snow fell and the night had come early and so Gunslingers had gathered round a fire to sing and trade stories of ancient winters and battles against darkness and cold.

Roland heard both but listened to neither. He couldn't bring himself to join the celebration. He was tired. He was worn. In-World was ravaged and he didn't think he had the strength to keep the night out. And it wasn't the sun he longed for, the brilliant burst of morning to chase away the cold and dark. He closed his eyes and all he saw was dark, dark in the shape of a spire…

A sound outside his tent. Roland moved quietly to the flap, hand hovering over his hip. The fiddle wailed and mourned, a haunting sound. The Christians sounded like ghosts against it. Roland shivered, the thought romantic but empty. There were no ghosts out tonight save the ones that haunted memories. He reached for the flap of the tent just as it flipped open from the outside. She stood like a deer caught in sights then, tall and rigid and silent. Her arms were wrapped around something. She looked…steeled, somehow. As though she faced an executioner rather than her Dinh.

"Aileen?"

She wet her lips and thrust something into his hands, eyes downcast. Roland took it, perplexed. It was light. He looked up but Aileen was gone already, turning and disappearing into the night without a word. He looked down, the small bundle weighing nearly nothing in his hands. Something soft wrapped in the stiff almost-paper used to protect meats from the butcher's.

A gift, like the Christians gave.

He sat and unwound it by lamplight, his features unchanging as he carefully untied the waxed string. It was a favor, or so Roland assumed. A scrap of gold colored fabric, frayed edges carefully bound and hemmed with matching cord. Somewhere between a handkerchief and a scarf. He held it in his hands and he remembered where he had seen it before. Aileen's coming of age gown. He remembered the way the rich fabric had seemed almost liquid under the moonlight. It still did.

She had fashioned a favor out of the scraps of her single gown.

Holding it in his hands, the wind and the fiddle and the chants loud in the darkness outside, Roland looked down on the bit of memory without expression. It was a lifetime ago. Aileen in his arms, his parents alive, his heart broken all the same. But Aileen had been so warm. Aileen had loved him then and loved him now. What had he ever done to deserve such devotion from her? By all rights she should hate him, this cold man who turned his eyes from her whenever they threatened to look with the warmth that came from desire.

He deserved her hate.

It was snowing again. A few stray flakes blew in through the tent flap and were ignored. Another fiddle song started up, a chorus of voices singing along. Was Aileen's among them? Or had she found some private place, to nurse her wounded heart? How could a heart that ached so bitterly still love so strongly? Roland held the favor a long while before folding it and tucking it into the lining of his coat, hidden but with him still.

It was a romantic gesture…but not entirely empty.

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