Title: Housewarming
Author: Jordanna Morgan (librarie@jordanna.net)
Archive Rights: Please request the author’s consent.
Rating/Warnings: Mild PG.
Characters: Asta, with the rest of the Black Bulls in the background.
Setting: Just after Asta joins the Black Bulls.
Summary: Asta is home after all.
Disclaimer: They belong to Yuki Tabata. I’m just playing with them.
Notes: Well, this is a fandom I never expected to write. Highly serialized anime that spend an entire season on one mid-level boss battle aren’t usually my thing… but the dysfunctional-family dynamics of the Black Bulls are endearing. (I’d rather see much more of that in canon than the endlessly repetitive magic battles.) Anyway, that camaraderie is the entire reason for this ficlet.
Written for the prompts of “Warmth” at Fan Flashworks, and “Own Bed” at Genprompt Bingo.

 

Housewarming

 

Even after Asta bade good night to his freakish new squadmates and went to bed, his first night at the Black Bulls’ hideout still felt weird… and more lonely than he wanted to admit.

Sure, at first the novelty of having a room and a bed all to himself was thrilling. But after he laid down, he gradually found that it was more like chilling—in the literal sense if not the scary one. Night-cold seeped into the stone walls of the narrow space, permeating the air. At least now he wasn’t sleeping on the floor, he reminded himself firmly; but still, a mattress and blankets didn’t warm him the way a pile of snuggling young bodies always had back home.

As the night dragged on and he slept fitfully, shivering each time he woke, the chill felt more and more like homesickness made tangible.

Then in the morning he was awakened by a crash somewhere downstairs. His head still muddled by sleep and the unfamiliar new environment, he rushed to throw on his clothes and snatch up his grimoire in readiness for danger… but as he moved toward the door, he began to make out the tangle of voices drifting from multiple directions in the labyrinth that was the hideout.

“Alright, that does it. Which one of you clowns stole my booze?”

“Wow, hey, you seem full of energy this morning!—C’mon and fight me!”

“Check it out, guys! It’s singles night at the Dreavy Hinker! …Wanna come with?”

“(Mumble…)”

“That is a completely insulting suggestion. Consorting with common rabble is beneath a royal.”

“So what’re ya doin’ here then, Your High And Mightiness?”

“You people are distracting me from my morning meditations on my sweet Marie.”

“Sheep cooks, more food NOW! Nobody said breakfast was over!”

“(Growl…)”

“Will all of you morons SHUT UP and let a guy take a crap in peace?”

Unaccountably, Asta felt a warmth blossom inside him, melting away the night’s chill. With a wide grin splitting his face, he opened the bedroom door—at the very moment that a huge fireball of Magna’s went whizzing down the hall, completing the job of warming him on the outside when it missed him by an inch.

Just maybe this crazy place stood a chance of feeling like home too.


© 2018 Jordanna Morgan