Devotional

May. 29th, 2016 12:19 pm
i_am_tl_dr: (hand in hand)
[personal profile] i_am_tl_dr
Title: Devotional
Characters: Quentin Graham, Tyler Jordan Graham, Donna Kinley, Harold Graham, Theresa Graham, Wendy Graham, Olivia Graham
Rating: PG-13
Word count: 3820
Notes: I have written a lot of things about after they're married... well, here's the wedding.


Timeline: November 6, 2015



They made it to the courthouse with plenty of time to spare, but found that Tyler Jordan's father and sisters had beaten them there. Wendy had her fancy camera hanging around her neck, and Quentin made a face at her that she shot right back at him. His reluctance to be photographed wasn't going to outweigh Tyler Jordan's request to have this moment captured for posterity, even if Quentin wouldn't let him put any of the pictures on social media. Donna arrived a few minutes after them, still in her work scrubs, and they all went in together, finding the right room with no trouble.

The officiant was a sharp-looking older lady who smiled at them as they came in. She glanced at the paperwork she'd been handed by Quentin, who looked nervous. "You're here to be married? Yes?"

"Yes," Tyler Jordan said. "We've got the witnesses, we've got our vows, we've got the rings, we just need you to actually marry us."

"Good, you're prepared. All right. Quentin and Tyler--"

"Tyler Jordan."

"Tyler Jordan, all right, we'll start with you then. Tyler Jordan Graham, will you take this man to be your lawfully wedded husband?"

"Absolutely yes."

"And Quentin Kinley, will you take this man to be your lawfully wedded husband?"

"Yes," Quentin said, leaning slightly to press his shoulder against Tyler Jordan's.

"Fantastic. If you have vows, now's the time for them."

"I'd like to go first," Quentin said. He turned to face Tyler Jordan, still looking nervous but also happy, and Tyler Jordan reached to take his hands in support. "Tyler Jordan... you gave me hope. I'd forgotten how to hope, I didn't know I was worth enough to hope for anything good, and you showed me how, you gave me something to hope for. You showed me that a lifetime of love could be real, that it isn't just a fairy tale I can't bring myself to believe in. So I'm giving you the rest of my hopes, because what I'm really hoping for is that you'll be with me forever." Quentin's cheeks were pink as he spoke his feelings in front of witnesses, but the way Tyler Jordan's smile got brighter with every word kept him speaking until he'd said them all. Tyler Jordan squeezed his hands tightly, absolutely delighted, and Quentin smiled at him the way he only ever smiled at Tyler Jordan, all his feelings clear on his face.

"God, I love you so much," Tyler Jordan said, "I-- okay, vows. Actual vows. Um." Wendy snorted off to the side, and Tyler Jordan closed his eyes for a moment, fixing them on Quentin's when he opened them again. "You walked into my life at exactly the right time," he said. "There's no one in the world I'd rather do everything with, no matter how small and mundane or how epic and ridiculous. I think we balance each other out perfectly and I plan on being the optimist pulling you into the sunshine for as long as you'll be my personal storm cloud casting rainbows between us."

"Awww," Wendy said, snapping photos. Olivia elbowed her.

"I'm happy to be the one you're giving your hopes to," he continued. "Cause we're hoping for the same thing. So I'm gonna do my best to make both our hopes into reality."

"You already do," Quentin said, and Tyler Jordan squeezed his hands again.

"And I'm gonna keep doing it for the rest of our lives." Donna sniffed loudly, and Harold handed her a tissue. Quentin glanced over at his mother and his eyes went a little panicked, and Tyler Jordan tugged on his hands to recapture his gaze. "Shh, those are happy tears."

"I don't understand those."

"Then you really shouldn't look back over there cause my dad's gonna start in about ten seconds," Tyler Jordan laughed, and he lifted Quentin's hand to kiss the back of it. "And I'm not guaranteeing that I might not shed a few."

"Please don't cry," Quentin said. "I don't want to be immediately cast in the role of awkward emotionally stunted husband. At least give me a couple hours before I have to do that."

"I'll save it until we get home," Tyler Jordan promised.

"You can exchange your rings now," the officiant said, looking amused. Wendy handed the ring boxes to each of them, and Quentin's hands were shaking slightly as he opened his and took out the ring.

"Breathe," Tyler Jordan reminded him, holding out his hand, and Quentin took a deep breath before sliding the ring onto Tyler Jordan's finger and then lacing their fingers together for a moment. Tyler Jordan beamed at him, visibly restraining himself from leaning in for a kiss. He took Quentin's hand instead, pulled his engagement ring off to slide the wedding band on in its place before putting the first ring where it would stay now, then drew Quentin's hand up to kiss his knuckles. Quentin's eyes were suspiciously shiny all of a sudden.

"Congratulations... Quentin and Tyler Jordan Graham. You can kiss him now," the officiant said, and the words didn't even clear her lips before they did, cupping each other's cheeks and sharing a sweet, lingering kiss. Wendy's camera clicked several more times, and Quentin dropped his head to Tyler Jordan's shoulder so he didn't have to look at their family members.

"You're all mine now," Tyler Jordan murmured, and the sound Quentin made was more like a sniffle than he wanted anyone to notice.

"I always have been," Quentin replied, and Tyler Jordan nuzzled against his hair and held him tighter. "And I always will be, now." Donna sniffed again, more loudly, and when the newlyweds looked over they found Harold patting her shoulder consolingly while blinking back his own tears. Wendy was the only one who wasn't obviously a little teary, and she kept the camera in front of her face while she clicked away, so she very well could have been.

"Congratulations," Theresa said. "Try not to kill each other before your first anniversary rolls around."

"Kill each other? Nah. Die together in a blaze of glory, that's our plan," Tyler Jordan said.

"But not any time soon," Quentin added. "We at least have to make it to our thirties."

"That's not a high bar to clear," Wendy said, lowering her camera. "Aim for your forties."

"One step at a time," Quentin said, and Tyler Jordan squeezed him and let go of him, reaching for his hand instead. "Thank you," he told the justice of the peace, who smiled at him.

"You're welcome. Congratulations. I hope you'll be happy together."

"We will," Tyler Jordan said. "Come on, let's get out of here."

"Let me take you out to lunch to celebrate," Harold said as they walked out of the building together. "In lieu of a reception or anything fancy."

"I'm in favor of that," Quentin said.

"Let's go to the hibachi place," Theresa suggested. "That's suitably celebratory."

"Ooh, yes," Tyler Jordan said, "that sounds excellent."

"Donna? Will you come with us?" Harold said. Donna nodded quickly.

"I'd love to. Shall we spend the time embarrassing our sons with baby stories?"

"Please don't," Quentin groaned, and Donna grinned at him.

"Don't worry, sweetie. I won't tell the really embarrassing ones."

"I feel like I should agree with Quentin on the basis of loyalty, but I'm so curious about what he was like as a kid," Tyler Jordan said. "And I have no shame about my baby stories. I was a ray of sunshine."

"You still are a ray of sunshine," Quentin said. "I was not a ray of sunshine as a kid."

"You were a sweet but difficult child," Donna said, touching his shoulder as they paused by the cars. "I think you loved me the most of all my children." Quentin turned to her, looking surprised, and she smiled at him. "You might be a grown man but you'll always be my baby, too."

"I'm not your baby," Quentin said, more because it was what he always said than because he wanted to push her away. "Just... don't ruin this by reminding me of when I was miserable, please?"

"I might not have realized it at the time, but I know what turned you unhappy," she said softly. "I do have a few funny stories from when you were really young. Trust me, Quentin. I'm not going to spoil your wedding day."

"I do trust you," Quentin said, but it didn't really sound like he meant it. Donna smiled again, but with a wistful twist this time, and she got into her car, leaving the newlyweds alone together. "I hope this won't be a disaster."

"Lunch, or our marriage?" Tyler Jordan asked, handing the keys to Quentin, who kissed him on the cheek for ceding the driver's seat without a fight.

"I meant my mother deliberately embarrassing me, but all of the above, I guess." They followed Harold's car to the hibachi restaurant, Quentin's eyes on the road and Tyler Jordan's eyes on his husband, studying Quentin quietly. Neither of them had gotten overly dressed up for their courthouse wedding-- Quentin didn't even own a suit, which would eventually need to be remedied-- but Quentin looked good in a dark red sweater, and he'd let Tyler Jordan braid his hair back, which Tyler Jordan had done partly because it looked nice and partly because he hadn't wanted Quentin trying to hide behind his hair again when he was the center of attention. Quentin glanced over when they stopped at a red light. "You're being suspiciously quiet."

"Suspiciously?" Tyler Jordan grinned at him. "I'm just thinking."

"Yes. That's dangerous."

"I'm wondering how long we'll be able to stand our family members before we go home and do what newlyweds do."

"Depends on how embarrassing my mother is," Quentin said. “I might not be able to cope with being teased right now. I’m already overly emotional.”

“It’s not overly emotional to feel things when you get married,” Tyler Jordan said. “Don’t worry. I won’t let her make you feel bad. My dad has about a million embarrassing stories about me that I don’t mind deflecting towards.” When they parked at the restaurant, Tyler Jordan leaned over and kissed Quentin sweetly. “Love you so much.”

“I love you too.”

“Ready for this?”

“As ready as I’ll ever be.”

Their party got seated at a hibachi table almost immediately, the new husbands in the middle surrounded by their parents, with Tyler Jordan’s sisters sitting around the edges. Tyler Jordan took Quentin’s hand and Quentin beamed at him, then glanced at his mother when she made an ‘aww’ sound.

“It’s so nice to see you smiling,” Donna said, smiling back at her son. “It used to be such a rare sight. Even before Janet was born.”

“I thought you said you were happier before her,” Tyler Jordan said, and Quentin sighed at his mother.

“You’re obviously dying to tell the story,” he said. “You might as well do it.”

“Oh, you’ll let me? Great! When Quentin was five, I took all my kids to the circus,” Donna said, and Tyler Jordan perked up.

“We went to that circus too, because that was when I was four. We have a picture of me and Paul sitting on an elephant that was taken there.”

“That’s one of my favorite pictures,” Harold said. “You both look so overjoyed in it.”

“Do you remember the trapeze act?” Donna asked. “The part where the guy bit onto the bar and went up into the air by his teeth?”

“Kinda,” Tyler Jordan said.

“Well. About a week after that, my sons were playing down the street with some of the neighborhood boys at the basketball hoop. One of the older boys picked Quentin up to let him dunk the basketball. Then he let go of Quentin. He was going to catch him again, but Quentin had bit down on the basketball net while he was up there.”

“Ripped a cuspid right out of my head,” Quentin said. He pressed a thumb to his left eyetooth. “This one. Lost it when I was five, it didn’t grow back until I was eleven. I just had a gap in my smile for six years. When people started teasing me about it, I just… didn’t smile as much any more. And then after my adult teeth came in, I got braces, and I just never smiled while those were on.”

“He bled so much when it happened,” Donna said. “That was the first time I saw my baby come home bleeding. I had no idea how often he’d be doing that when he got to high school.”

“You got used to it,” Quentin said, and Donna shook her head.

“No. That’s not a thing a parent ever gets used to. I learned to always keep an ice pack in the freezer and butterfly bandages and gauze in the cabinet, but every time you came home injured I felt helpless. Like I’d failed you.” Her lips pulled down to one side. “I was taking nursing classes and raising too many kids and working too much and I… just never seemed to have enough of anything I needed to do things right. Enough time, or money, or emotional energy.”

“You didn’t fail me,” Quentin said. Tyler Jordan shot him a sideways glance and bit his tongue. He could tell when Quentin was lying, but he didn’t think he’d ever seen Quentin lie to spare someone’s feelings before. “You did the best you could.” He shrugged, smiling slightly. “I’m getting fixed from how broken I used to be, anyways.”

“Thank you, sweetie.” Donna looked at them both, smiling again. “And thank you, Tyler Jordan. For taking such good care of him. I’m so happy to see him smile again.”

“Making him smile is what I’m here for now,” Tyler Jordan said, lacing his fingers through Quentin’s and lifting his hand to kiss the back of it. “He’s my priority. He has been for a while now.”

“Don’t make me your purpose,” Quentin said. “I’m a terrible purpose. Music is your purpose.”

“Fine, music is my purpose, but you’re my muse.”

“Oh my god,” Wendy said, laughing. “I just imagined him like the muses from Hercules.”

“In a toga?” Tyler Jordan looked at Quentin with a grin. “He could rock a toga.”

“I’m not wearing a toga,” Quentin said. “If you wanna wear a toga, go right ahead.”

“It’s not fun if only one of us does it.”

“Bet I could make it fun for you.”

“Get a room,” Olivia said. “Please. Dad, can you tell a story about Tyler Jordan getting hurt? He has some really dumb ones.”

“I suppose that would be fair,” Harold said. “Maybe one in a similar vein as Quentin’s? Trying to copy something he’d seen with disastrous results?”

“The one when I was a toddler or the one when I was a teenager?” Tyler Jordan asked.

“Which would you prefer?”

“The one when I was a teenager was funnier,” Tyler Jordan said. “I mean, as funny as major injury gets.”

“It is hilarious,” Wendy said.

“All right, that one, then. Tyler Jordan’s always had a tendency to imitate his brother, and Paul has always been into boarding. Skateboarding in the summer and snowboarding in the winter. Tyler Jordan would get Paul’s hand-me-down boards and follow him around the neighborhood.”

“When he would let me,” Tyler Jordan said. “He would, most of the time, on skateboards at least. Not on the slopes, though. He helped teach me how to snowboard, but once I learned, he’d go off to the diamond slopes and leave me on the easier hills.”

“Right after Tyler Jordan turned fourteen, we all went to the mountain. Paul took off on his own, Juliana and I were watching the girls on the bunny hill, and Tyler Jordan went off to goof around with some other kids his age on an intermediate slope. He wasn’t even on his snowboard or at the top of the slope when he got hurt. Some of the kids were playing around on sleds near the base of the hill.”

“You know those circle sleds? The big plastic dots?” Quentin nodded, and Tyler Jordan shook his head. “They are not snowboards.”

“He tried going down using one like a snowboard, lost his balance, put one foot down, and spiral fractured his femur from the momentum.”

“That was the dumbest thing I’d ever done in my life up to that point,” Tyler Jordan said. “It took them almost two hours to get me to the hospital, and they barely found my family before the ambulance got me loaded.”

“Paul stayed with Juliana to get the girls home, and I rode along to the hospital with him,” Harold said. “He was in so much pain and the ride to the hospital was so long that they gave him morphine in the ambulance and I practically watched him float away.”

“I don’t remember anything I said, but it felt like I was being wrapped in warm clouds.”

“Oh, you were talking a mile a minute, slurring your words, of course.” Harold laughed. “He told me that there was a tiny Bob Ross painting sheep on the inside of his ear.”

“That definitely sounds like a morphine thing to say,” Donna said.

“That’s kind of adorable,” Quentin said, squeezing his husband’s hand. “Good thing you broke a leg and not an arm.”

“Being laid up with that broken leg was when I learned to play guitar,” Tyler Jordan said. “All I asked for was the guitar, but Dad found someone to come over and give me lessons for a few weeks while I wasn’t going anywhere. I took to it like a duck to water. Up until then I thought the violin was my instrument. Nah. I was always meant to play guitar.”

“And now you’re teaching me on the same guitar you learned on,” Quentin said.

“Aw, that’s sweet,” Wendy said. “He’s a good teacher. Very patient.”

“Trust me, I know,” Quentin said. “We wouldn’t be here right now if he wasn’t abnormally patient.”

“But here we are,” Tyler Jordan said brightly. “Right on the doorstep of you trying my patience for the rest of our lives.”

“You’re the one who asked me. You can’t mind too much.”

“Mind? Mind is not the word. I love your complications. Our lives are never gonna be boring.” The hibachi chef wheeled his cart up to the table, and conversation lapsed while the cooking show was going on, but Quentin and Tyler Jordan didn’t let go of each other’s hands until they needed to pick up their chopsticks.

“Are you going on a honeymoon?” Wendy asked as everyone was finishing up their food.

“Not right away,” Tyler Jordan said.

“We can’t agree on where to go,” Quentin said. “I want to go to New York City but he keeps trying to sell me on Brazil.”

“You would love Brazil,” Tyler Jordan said, and Quentin shook his head.

“You just want me to meet your other grandparents. This is you being weird about family again.”

“It’s not weird to love my family,” Tyler Jordan said. “And you are now part of my family. So yes, I do want you to meet them. But I also wanna do a thousand other things with you there.”

“We’ve been talking about this for weeks now,” Quentin told Wendy. “He wants to go to Brazil for like two weeks. I want to do like, five days in NYC. Where we can’t catch malaria.”

“We’re not gonna catch malaria,” Tyler Jordan sighed. “Or dengue. Or yellow fever. Or zika.”

“No, we won’t, because we can’t catch them in Manhattan.”

“We’ve already been to New York City together.”

“Yeah, for less than twenty-four hours! Come on, you know I’ve never gotten to do the touristy stuff anywhere. We’ll go international next time. Maybe spring break next year?”

“We could do that,” Tyler Jordan said. “We could do the city in December? After it’s all decked out for the holidays?”

“I will indulge your love of Christmas if you will indulge my love of Broadway.”

“Not a hardship. We both love Broadway.”

“I know. This is me attempting to compromise.”

“I love it when you’re willing to compromise.” Tyler Jordan leaned in to steal a kiss.

“I don’t know exactly what you’ve done to my son, but it’s remarkable,” Donna said. “Like magic.”

“It is magic,” Quentin said, rolling his eyes. “He cast a spell on me. I’m enchanted.”

“Don’t give away my secrets,” Tyler Jordan said. “It took like an entire gallon of dragon’s blood to tame him. And he still breathes fire when he’s pissed.”

“He’s always done that,” Donna said. “You seem to be immune.”

“I know when it’s time to put on the oven mitts to handle him.”

“You’re ridiculous,” Quentin said, and Tyler Jordan grinned at him.

“You started it. I’m just playing along.” Quentin leaned up and whispered something, and Tyler Jordan lit up. “Oh really. Is that a promise?”

“It’s a promise with a time limit.”

“Oh, I see how it is. Are we skipping dessert, then?”

“That’s up to you,” Quentin said. “But I’m full. So.”

“Will anyone be offended if we leave right now?”

“Please leave right now,” Olivia said. “You’ve been making bedroom eyes at each other this whole time.”

“No one will be offended,” Harold said. “Congratulations, again.”

“Thanks,” Quentin said, pulling Tyler Jordan to his feet, a little too eager to get out of there. “And thank you for lunch. And for being our witnesses.”

“Don’t let him boss you around too much,” Donna told Tyler Jordan, who grinned.

“You’re way too late on that warning. But we’ll manage. Bye!” They made it out to the car before Tyler Jordan turned a concerned look on Quentin. “Are you all right?”

“Yeah, I’d just had enough of people. And I think our first act as married men should be to take a nap together. Because I am full and kinda sleepy and we have the entire weekend to properly consummate our marriage.”

“Have you been reading romance novels? We’ve already consummated our relationship a few hundred times,” Tyler Jordan joked, and Quentin grinned at him and guided the car out of the parking lot.

“Yes. But now I’m your husband. So we have to see if it feels any different. And I think we should be very thorough in checking.”

“Funny, I thought I was the hopeless romantic in this relationship.”

“You’ve rubbed off on me, I guess,” Quentin said, reaching over to settle a hand on Tyler Jordan’s knee. “Better than you picking up my traits, for sure.”

“We’ve both changed each other,” Tyler Jordan said, and he squeezed Quentin’s hand. “For good, I think.”

“Definitely for good.”
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