AN: One-shot number 2! If you want to check out the first one, head over to my account! (This one was something different for me; I tried out that whole 'no speech in the one-shot' thing. I'm not sure how it went.)

For: Sophie Capulet

Pairing: Courfeynine (Courfeyrac/Éponine)

Summary: Modern AU; Courfeyrac and Éponine had come to learn the meaning of 'family'.


It took Courfeyrac and Éponine a long time to finally settle down. In fact, nothing at all in their relationship had been fast, from their first meeting when Courfeyrac was still in college, to when he finally asked Éponine on a date when she graduated university. When he eventually asked her to marry him, it was with a long list of the many things they'd experienced together, and he had received a yes so certain that Courfeyrac wondered if he'd even had to ask.

Even after their marriage, however, things were shaky. They both had jobs that often kept them busy enough to not see each other for days, Courfeyrac as a lawyer and Éponine as a freelance journalist who helped out at a cafe down the street whenever they needed an extra pair of hands.

It wasn't until Éponine fell pregnant for the first time that the two realised that they had spent far too long apart. They loved each other irrevocably, and would soon have a child together as physical, undeniable proof, but they needed to settle down. Though it caused many arguments, resulting in quiet mornings and tearful reconciliations, they both, eventually, agreed to do everything in their power to make it work.

They moved into a little neighbourhood not far from the centre of Paris; the estate agent had described it as 'a little haven in a busy city'. Éponine and Courfeyrac had taken one look at the house they were shown and practically shoved the deposit at the thrilled man.

When Charles Enjolras Courfeyrac (Courfeyrac had taken great joy in seeing his oldest friend gape madly at being honoured in the baby's name) was born, Courfeyrac and Éponine had, for the first time, got an idea of what it was like to have a family of their own. Marius and Cosette had long since had children, their three daughters all in school by the time Charles was brought into the world, and had told the couple that it was a feeling unlike any other, to have your own child.

Courfeyrac and Éponine had scoffed at the pair for saying it, and came to deeply regret doing so, for Marius and Cosette had been very, very right.

As time passed, the sense of family became less original and more of their normal lives; Charles grew quickly and both of his parents found that they were aching for another child. They had been blessed with Charles unexpectedly, but it had been the best surprise either of them had ever received and they wanted to experience that again.

A few months before Charles turned three, Abriella Cosette and Noelia Marie joined the Courfeyrac family. Two years after that, Edmond Combeferre arrived completely out of the blue (Éponine hadn't even known she was pregnant until three months before she was due and had no idea how such a thing could have happened). Éponine and Courfeyrac couldn't have been happier with the family that they had put so much time and love into creating; their children meant more to them than they could physically put into words.

They discovered, however, that it wasn't just their children that held a place so deep in their hearts that they warranted a place in their family. Their friends, who had always simply been there, were too important to just be overlooked, even after Éponine and Courfeyrac moved away and settled down. It was their friends who initially made them realise that families didn't often have entirely happy experiences. Over the years, many events proved this fact, as if to remind the pair that a family didn't simply guarantee their happiness.

The first was Enjolras declaring that he was moving to England to take up a job as the French Liaison to the British Government. Courfeyrac had wished him luck and then locked himself away from everyone for days, scaring the living daylights out of Éponine and making Enjolras feel extremely guilty. After a good talking-to from his wife and a promise to stay in touch via phone, email and letters from Enjolras, Courfeyrac had managed to send his friend off with his blessing.

The second was when Grantaire received news that his father had died unexpectedly. Though he'd never had the best of relationships with the man, Grantaire had been positively devastated, to the point where he drained his entire alcohol cabinet. Éponine found him unconscious and barely breathing on the floor the next morning when she'd gone to offer her condolences. He spent almost three weeks recovering in hospital, his previous drinking habits and cabinet-emptying escapade leaving him with a barely functioning liver. After a week of it being touch-and-go, he finally came around. Éponine somehow found the restraint to wait until he was out of the hospital to slap him.

The third, final, and most devastating event for Courfeyrac and Éponine, was when they lost their potential fifth child. They had just found out that Éponine was pregnant again and were completely thrilled, though they swore to each other that this would be their last child; there was only so many times that you could cope with the sleepless nights, constant worrying and added pressure of looking after a life. Not a fortnight later, Éponine was rushed to hospital, where she and Courfeyrac were faced with the news that Éponine would not be having a fifth child, whether it was now or at any other point in their lives.

Though they always told people that they loved their children more than anything else, they realised that this wasn't entirely true, for if they didn't love each other more than anything then they wouldn't be able to move past anything and everything that life threw at them.

The thing they loved more than anything was really the completeness and finality that was their family; not just their precious children, but their friends and each other, the people who made their lives worth living. With the support and safety offered by the people around them, Éponine and Courfeyrac found the determination to push through life with an optimism that was only strengthened by the bonds that kept their family whole. In the end, they discovered that it was only through the love that surrounded them, and had done so since their first meeting, when Éponine was sixteen years old and Courfeyrac had to make the decision to walk up to a pretty girl and say hi.

In his opinion, that simple greeting was the best thing he'd ever done and the resulting relationships were daily reminders of just how good the decision had been.

Review if you deem this worthy, I apologise for uploading it so late (this was supposed to be up last Wednesday woooppsss) and the next one will be up on Sunday. (To Sophie Capulet: thanks for following and I hope this met/exceeded your expectations!)