(I also had a prompt from @mayleavestars for JMBR coffee shop in space, so clearly I had to do space, coffee shop, and meeting the parents all at once!)
Joly looks up in alarm when Bossuet
skids into the shop during an afternoon lull, his momentum finally
stopped by the counter when he runs into it and promptly bangs his
personal communicator down on it. “I am ruining our weekend plans,”
“Did you forget an appointment
again?” Grantaire calls from the kitchen, where he’s making a batch
of his moon-famous muffins. “I keep telling you, we really need to
start a calendar for all of us so when we get Bahorel and Jehan to
cover for a day or two we can make the most of it.”
“I got a message from my parents,”
says Bossuet, eyes wide, and Joly freezes, because Bossuet adores his
parents, so it must be bad news. Musichetta, who has been ignoring
them with enviable serenity from where she’s planning out the week’s
menu, looks up, so it must be serious. “They bought tickets here
without telling me and they’re arriving this afternoon. On the next
shuttle. Mom sent the message from Earthport so I wouldn’t have time
to prepare myself.”
That is … not disastrous. But it is
definitely very nerve-wracking. Joly takes a deep breath and can
almost feel Musichetta and Grantaire taking one in tandem. He
recovers from his deep breath first. “Um, can I ask why?”
“She said something about bringing
the earth to the moon colony if the moon colony won’t come to earth,
but really it’s to meet you two. Well, three, I keep telling them you
aren’t technically our boyfriend, R, but you’re my roommate, so they
@mamzellecombeferre i can’t copy past your prompt properly or make this super long because TABLET but as promised. The prompt was : Bossuet, Joly et Feuilly + one frayed unraveling sock, two ribbons and a paintbrush.
To find Bossuet sitting in the middle of Joly’s living-room, two candles lightened in front of him, and one sock laying on the ground next to them, was not as shocking to Feuilly now as it might have been a year back. He had been the witness of many odd things in Joly’s (and Bossuet’s really) rooms, and he generally tried not to ask too many questions. Still – Joly had been whispering since he’d arrived with the pamphlets for tomorrow’s evening, and Bossuet looked so serious, that this time Feuilly’s curiosity got the best of him:
“Is everything alright?” He asked, finding himself whispering too despite not knowing why. “What are you doing?”
“Alas,” said Bossuet gravely. “Here lies my last sock. She was as brave as one could living at my feet, but now i fear her time to keep me warm is over at last. I will mourn her as it is proper, for none was as itchy, full of holes yet faithful to the post as she. She will be missed.”
Feuilly blinked. Joly moved around him, and came to put a hand on Bossuet’s shoulder, his face full of sympathy, despite his lips twitching like they wished to smile. Feuilly hesitated, stared at his friends, then thought about his lonely lodgings, and sat in front of Bossuet.
“Why is there only one?” He asked.
Clearly Bossuet hadn’t expected him to play along, because his serious demeanour threatened to break for a moment, before he coughed and answered with as much feeling as possible:
“The other left a while ago, never to be seen again, during a trip to the washing rooms. And while we must applaud her will for freedom, for it is what we all want and wishes for, i’m afraid this was the last straw for this one. Abandonned by all, she decayed until she came to this state. There is nothing to be done with it now. Even our best, most talented seamstress as declared her done for. As such, we are saying goodbye today before burying it.”
Feuilly looked at the sock. It looked indeed in a very bad state, and it was clear it would never fit anyone’s feet again. Still – to throw things away was against his nature. He thought for a moment, and then he straightened up.
“You sock may very well never be a sock again,” he said. “But i have another future for it if you let me try, Bossuet.”
Bossuet looked surprised but intrigued. He waved at him permission, and both Joly and him leaned closer as Feuilly grbbed the sock, and started to examine it before twisting it experimentally.
“I haven’t done this since i was a little boy,” said Feuilly thoughtfully. “Do you guys have some strings?”
Joly looked around, then he asked: “we have ribbons?” And went to retrieve them when Feuilly nodded decisively.
Once in possession of that, Feuilly went to work, and filled the poor sock with one the ribbons, making sure it didn’t spill out of the sock’s hole. Then, he carefully took the other ribbon and tied it up around the sock, until it looked like the sock had a little round head, and a frayed dress, with some imagination.
“There,” he said, pleased. “Now your sock is a doll, and kids will be happy to play with it. I made my first doll like that. Of course, i got better at carving tree branches after that, but nothing truly remplaces little dolls like that. They’re softer.”
He raised his eyes, satisfied, but then saw the faces of Joly and Bossuet. They had stilled, their eyes sad and a bit shocked, and Feuilly suddenly felt embarassed by his creation. It was as if Feuilly’s poor childhood had suddenly invaded the room with all its pitifulness and ugliness, and awkardness was not long to follow. Feuilly flushed in shame, tried to find something to say, anything, to have them forget what he’d said when Joly suddenly declared thoughfully:
“Do you know, if you squint, the doll looks like Grantaire a bit.”
“It does,” said Bossuet, moving closer. “I don’t know if it is the color or the form, but all it misses is the ugly nose.”
“Feuilly,” said Joly, “you know how to paint, don’t you? R left us one of his paintbrushes yesterday, after giving up again to paint us. We should draw his face, and then offer the doll to him. He is no child, but i can only assume he will be delighted we have thought of him.”
Feuilly breathed out slowly. It was truly Bossuet and Joly’s gift, he thought, that none of their sudden cheerfulness felt forced or full of pity. When he smiled, they beamed, and something uncomfortable disappeared in Feuilly’s stomach.
“Alright,” he said, holding the sock doll carefully in his hand. “Let’s make it for Grantaire.”
Friendly reminder that the first person Marius talks to after he had just fallen out with his grandfather is Bossuet.
Marius who has to be absolutely heart-broken and angry, whose father has recently died, who has just made his grandfather kick him out, who has just left his financialy stable, secure life, the only life he’s ever had, who has no idea where to go, what to do, with next to no money and literally no one left.
Marius who then hears this random stranger calling out his name, a man he has never even met before and who just got kicked out of law school for someone he didn’t even know. A completely poor, young man who doesn’t even has a place to live, who does something nice for someone he has never met without expecting anything in return simply out of the sheer goodwill of his heart.
Bossuet is literally the first good thing that happens to Marius in this new, probably absolutely terrifying part of his life that just started.
He is like, the epitome hope here, that things might not be as bad as they seem. That even in the most hopeless times, there’s the brightness of unconditional human kindness.
I just. Love. Bossuet. So. Much.
So I wasn’t going to do anything this year, and then suddenly this happened. It’s unproofread, so don’t hesitate to alert me to any typos – I’m super rusty at this, so I expect there are many.
Though Enjolras had ordered sleep, Feuilly was not alone in quietly tending to his affairs. Around him, men sorted through their pockets, refilled pipes, scribbled hasty notes to their loved ones on any scrap of paper they could find. He heard murmurs of conversation as his comrades sat in twos and threes, clasping hands and brushing shoulders. He had never been a soldier, but he somehow knew that this very scene had played out countless times before in countless places across the globe. He felt as though he were part of a never-ending play, as though he had stepped into a role played by countless actors before him, one that would be reprized until the bloody curtain of history at last fell on the human race. The thought offered as much comfort as it did despair – never had he felt himself more part of the world as he did now, squatting crouched behind their barricade, the streets beneath his feet uneven and dripping with blood and with history. He felt as though he could reach out and touch all the others who sat, as he did, awaiting death with open eyes and a steady heart.
“Are you not going to take our general’s words to heart?”
Modern AU Bossuet dealing with constant bureacratic hassles because the name on his birth certificate is different from the name on his driver’s license which is different from the name on his credit card which is different from the name on the lease on his apartment. He’s been summoned for jury duty six times because somehow the courthouse has him listed as eight different people.
The clerk looked at the apologetic young man in front of her, and then looked down at the two envelopes he was brandishing. “So, you say you got two jury summonses? For two different people? Except both people are you.”
“That’s right. See, this one’s to last name L’aigle, ‘L-apostrophe-A-I-G-L-E-,’ and this one’s to last name Lesgle, ‘L-E-S-G-L-E.’ I go by both. Or, rather, officialdom has decreed that I go by both, as I sometimes show up as one and sometimes as the other on various records.”
“Okay, I’ll see what I can do. Can I see some ID please?”
“Certainly.” He pulled out his driver’s license.
The clerk looked at it, then back to the envelopes. “This says ‘Legle.’ No ’S.’”
“Officialdom has decreed that I go by three names. It is a very indecisive beast. No offense intended towards your employers, of course,” he quickly added.
The clerk sighed.
“In my defense, they’re all pronounced more-or-less the same,” the young man, L’aigle, Lesgle, or Legle, whatever he was called, said cheerfully. “My friends call me Bossuet, if that helps.”
“And this crevasse here means that you are very clever but bad at
“Monsieur My Good Doctor,” said Bossuet, “I begin to
entertain doubts regarding the veracity of your science.”
“How can you, when the evidence is so irrefutable?” said
Joly, somehow keeping a straight face. He let his hands continue to roam over
Bossuet’s head, massaging his scalp. “Ah, here we have the oratoris offensatum,
common to men who speak very well and make many enemies.”
“The highest doubts,” continued Bossuet. “I am inviting my
doubts to supper and pouring them the finest wine I own.”
“And here,” said Joly, ignoring Bossuet’s comments, “this
protrusion of the skull indicates that you should kiss your doctor often and
thoroughly. For the sake of your health, I recommend starting soon.”
“Behold, the miracles of science! I am made a believer,”
said Bossuet happily.
Les Mis Modern Aesthetic, Bossuet
He possessed knowledge and wit, but all he did miscarried. Everything failed him and everybody deceived him; what he was building tumbled down on top of him. If he were splitting wood, he cut off a finger. If he had a mistress, he speedily discovered that he had a friend also. Some misfortune happened to him every moment, hence his joviality. He said: “I live under falling tiles.” He was not easily astonished, because, for him, an accident was what he had foreseen, he took his bad luck serenely, and smiled at the teasing of fate, like a person who is listening to pleasantries. He was poor, but his fund of good humor was inexhaustible. He soon reached his last sou, never his last burst of laughter.
Les Miserables, Victor Hugo, 3.4.1
Face Claim: Sinqua Walls