Prompt: Can we have Ted and Brennan being domestic? I just?? I love Ted?? So much??
A.N.- This is pre The Only Faith (so before Brennan was arrested a second time, before he ever went to the Academy, back when he was dating Noah and had different friends, etc). NFJC wanted it to be post The Only Faith but I started writing it and it just felt more natural this way sorry fam
"Lift your feet," Ted said.
I lifted my feet off the ground and swung them around onto the couch. My back rested against the edge of the couch, my phone in my hands as I texted.
It was suddenly snatched from my hands and Ted shot me a look as he dangled it out of my reach. "The house is dirty. You live here, get cleaning."
"Clean what?" I said.
"Any of the millions of messes you and your friends made," Ted said. "Here, while I finish vacuuming, I want you to wipe down the counters in the kitchen. Don't think I didn't notice how sticky the counter was. You and Quinn were snacking on ice cream again last night, weren't you?"
"A midnight snack of ice cream would be completely unhealthy," I said. "We would never!"
"Go clean it up and I'll pretend it never happened," he said.
"A fair deal." I scurried my way to the kitchen and grabbed a wash cloth, getting to work on cleaning the counters.
Ted came into the room a few minutes later to vacuum up all the crumbs I'd pushed to the floor, knowing how bad I was at cleaning by now. I tossed the wash cloth in the sink as Ted finished up his vacuuming.
"Any plans for the day?" he asked as he unplugged the vacuum.
I shook my head. "Nah, not today. Everyone is busy. Well, Quinn is probably just sleeping. But everyone else is legitimately busy."
"Sit down. I'll make us hot chocolate," Ted said, opening the cupboard to get out mugs. "Kind of chilly out today. Probably best to stay inside. I don't need you getting sick and spreading germs around my house."
"I own a jacket, you know," I said.
"And not enough common sense to wear it. You ran off to school in a T-shirt in the rain the other day," Ted said. "Start wearing a jacket to school."
"Stop getting on my ass about jackets, old man," I said. "I'm youthful and warm blooded."
"You're youthful and thick headed," Ted grumbled, putting the mugs in the microwave and starting it up. "Make yourself useful and grab the marshmallows out of the top shelf there."
I got up and opened a cupboard, climbing up onto a counter so I could grab the marshmallows off the top shelf. Ted finished getting the hot chocolate ready as I sat back down, opening the marshmallows.
We each put some marshmallows in our drinks as Ted sat down across from me. I pressed my hands against the mug, the heat warming them.
"I remember this one time my parents took me sledding in the winter. My sled hit a bump and sent me flying out, tumbling down the hill and freezing my sorry face off. My parents took me home, crying like a baby. They made me hot chocolate and my mom wrapped me in all these blankets and joked that I'd emerge like a butterfly hell bent on revenge against winter," I said, laughing a little. My laughter died off as I stared down at the hot chocolate, wondering if I'd ever even see my parents again. I hadn't talked to them since I came to Ted's. He'd been dealing with them over the phone to update them on my behavior.
"Why doesn't that surprise me," Ted said, catching my attention. "Bet you weren't wearing a jacket."
I cracked a small grin. "I was. Believe it or not, old man, I can make smart decisions sometimes."
"I'll believe it when I see it," he said. "What a lousy day. Get the deck of cards out of the drawer. We'll play a game while we drink."
"You sound like an old alcoholic," I said, getting up and grabbing the deck. I shuffled them and dealt out, already knowing he'd want to play Rummy.
"Brennan, what are you doing tomorrow? I'm meeting a friend out for dinner. I don't trust you to cook for yourself, so if you're going to be around, I'll pick you up a sub before I go," he said.
"I'm going out with my friends," I said. "I'll just grab a bite to eat with them."
"You kids better be staying out of trouble," Ted said sternly.
"We are," I lied. "Come on Ted, does Noah seem like a troublemaker to you?"
"I don't put it past you to corrupt him," Ted said. "Just make sure you wear a jacket when you go out tomorrow. If you get sick, I'm not feeling sorry for you."
"When I die, I swear you'll put that in my obituary. 'Here lies Brennan, he's probably up in heaven right now not wearing his freaking jacket'," I said.
"Heaven," Ted said, snorting. "Yea, sure, that's definitely where you're going."
"I am an angel," I said.
"You're a pain in the ass is what you are," Ted said. "Also a loser. You know you can't beat me at Rummy."
"Not even a pity win?" I said miserably.
"Not even a pity win." Ted grinned a little as he laid down the last of his cards. "Ready to lose again?"
So the two of us played and talked casually as we drank our hot chocolate. Ted asked me about my friends and how school was going. He was supposed to be keeping a very close eye on me to make sure I didn't get into any more trouble, but as time went on, he slowly eased how strict he was and let me run free a little more.
I finally gave up at cards once my drink was gone and Ted had kicked my ass more times than I could count. I helped Ted clean up and the two of us went to the living room, sitting on the couch together.
"Your socks are gross," Ted said as I put my feet up on the coffee table. "Get them off my coffee table. If you don't piss me off this week, maybe I'll get you new ones."
I stuck my foot in his face. "My feet are beautiful. Equality for all feet."
Ted pushed my foot away. "Get that disgusting thing out of my face. God, you're such a pain to put up with."
He turned on the TV as I dropped my feet back to the ground. He handed me a blanket as we settled in to watch the TV together.
It was a cold, lazy afternoon. Ted got up at one point to make us popcorn and we set the bowl between us, eventually putting on Netflix and picking a movie to watch.
I knew tomorrow I'd be back to causing trouble with my friends. But today wasn't tomorrow, so for now, I just sat with Ted and smiled a little at how, for as much of a pain as he claimed I was, he still wanted to spend time with me.