Disclaimer: not mine
Regis held Noctis close as his son gave in and cried. When Cor had rung to say the boy's car had been hit…for a second he had feared the worst, that he had lost his son. His reaction wasn't surprising, a car accident was very different to an assassination attempt; you could fight an assassin, you couldn't fight a car.
He glanced up to find Cor, sitting on the edge of young Prompto's bed, checking on him. Regis knew Cor had done his best to remain in the boy's life after the adoption, though he hadn't always managed. Cor had been upset but had accepted the truth when his petition to adopt Prompto had been knocked back, at that point he'd simply been out in the field too much to provide a stable home. Then again, from what he'd heard Noctis rant about, it sounded like the Argentum's were home even less.
Harry was leaning against the wall, watching them all, and Regis hated the lie they were living, that he was Cor's cousin and not Regis'. He was unable to spend any real time with the younger man, to get to know him the way he wished. Though he was glad that Noctis was bonding well with him, that had been one of his major concerns. He was hoping that Harry would find a place with Noctis' friends as well, but that would take more time. That accident could have taken his whole family from him…he had to find a way to spend more time with Noctis and to get to know Harry better.
He wasn't at all surprised when Noctis fell asleep in his arms, the stress, fear and pain medication knocking him out.
He didn't want to wake up, he was warm and comfortable, and there was a gentle hand in his hair, petting it. Had he stayed at Noct's? The hand stopped and he made a noise, vaguely hearing a chuckle before it was back.
"Awake kid?" a familiar voice asked and Prompto groaned but slowly forced his eyes open, blinking up at Cor. "Welcome back, how do you feel?"
What? He blearily looked around; the place only vaguely familiar…from when he was little. "Cor?" he was in the Citadel medical facilities, somewhere he hadn't been since being adopted.
"Do you remember what happened?" he asked gently and that really worried him.
He tried to sit up and Cor helped him, lifting the head of the bed. Prompto looked around and blanched as he saw the King on the next bed, Noctis in his arms, and a man near the wall…Harry. He gasped, looking back to Noctis again, eyes wide.
"Easy Prompto," Cor murmured. "Everyone's safe," he promised and Prompto slumped, trusting him. He'd always trusted Cor.
"We…were hit?" he asked croakily, just to be sure and Cor nodded.
"You've all been checked for injuries and cleared. They had you on oxygen for a little to help your breathing so your mouth might be dry. If you're hot we can take some of the blankets off too," Cor explained. He offered a cup and Prompto took it, sucking on the ice chips inside.
"Is Noct okay?" he asked, looking over and the King smiled at him, running his hand over Noctis' back.
"Just some bruising from the seatbelt and his back is paining him. He fell asleep a few minutes ago."
"Oh." He looked at Harry who smiled at him.
"I'm fine," the older teen told him, moving away from the wall and over to his bed. "You had us worried," Harry admitted, reaching out to pat his shoulder gently.
Prompto went red, ashamed by how he had reacted to the accident. Considering what he'd been through as a kid, even if he barely remembered most of it, the accident had been nothing. Noct hadn't panicked like he had, and Harry was only a year older than them.
Cor knew Prompto was embarrassed by the panic attack, at having done nothing to help. No one was mad though, Prompto was for all intents and purposes a civilian teenager. What childhood training he'd received had not been geared towards car accidents and he knew Prompto remembered little of the training, at least consciously. Now and then he'd do something that surprised himself, like the first time he'd picked up one of those game control guns at the arcade and nearly broken the high score record.
If Prompto hadn't befriended Noctis then his being raised as a civilian would have been good, the life he deserved. By befriending Noctis and sticking with him, it was putting Prompto right back into a life of potential danger and violence. If Cor had adopted him, he'd be ready for that life. He knew Noctis had wanted to shelter Prompto from the realities of Royal life, but it wasn't possible anymore. All evidence pointed to the accident being just that, an accident. The next time they may not be so lucky and would be facing a group of assassins. If Prompto froze then he could get them all killed. And once they were out of school, Noctis would have less and less time for the kid. If they wanted to stay close then Prompto would need to seriously start considering joining the Crownsguard. Noctis obviously wanted him to take the final position in his Retinue after all.
Before anything more could be said, a doctor entered to check Prompto over since he was awake, finding him well enough to be released.
"For tonight at least, it would be best for you to remain in the Citadel, Mr Argentum," Regis spoke and Prompto stiffened, staring at the King with wide eyes. Not surprising since he'd never stayed the night before. Since his adoption he'd seen very little of the Citadel which frustrated Noctis.
"He's right kid, just while we're investigating," Cor told him.
"He can stay with me," Harry offered, and Cor was relieved his 'cousin' realised they would want him to remain close as well. Everything pointed at it being an accident but until they wrapped it up, it was better to be safe than sorry with the two Royals. That was why Harry had quarters in the Citadel near Ignis and Gladio's rather than close to Cor's own, that area was better defended than where his were.
"Oh…I can go home, really," Prompto argued.
Harry shook his head and put a hand on his shoulder. "Relax, I've got a guestroom. You'll be just a corridor away from Scientia as well." He didn't feel like he knew them well enough to use their first names just yet. He knew they weren't entirely comfortable with his presence yet and he didn't blame them.
"Go on kid, get some food and sleep in a better bed. Hopefully this will all be done in a day or two," Cor told the blond who sighed and got up, stumbling slightly and Harry steadied him.
"Will return to his rooms when he wakes," Regis answered, smiling softly. "I am sure he will be happy to see you in the morning."
That got a snicker from Prompto. "Maybe lunch?" he suggested, and they all chuckled, Noctis' dislike of mornings was very well known.
They said their goodbyes and Harry led Prompto to his citadel quarters, which he'd used exactly once since being given them. He preferred his apartment, despite his years living with his Dad and Uncle he still preferred a much more informal and less fancy place to live.
"I know it's pretty basic, I've only used the place once, I prefer my apartment in Little Galahd," Harry told him as he let him inside. He went to the small kitchen and got out two cans of soup and some frozen bread, glad he'd stocked up on some basics. He could order from the kitchens, but he didn't think Prompto would be feeling too hungry after everything.
"That shield…it was gold. Noct's magic is blue."
Harry looked over at the nervous teen and nodded. "Yeah, it is," he agreed, serving the soup on mugs. "I took the Oath like a Glaive," he gave the lie. "It's why I work with Noct, he's been helping me with the basics, and I've been helping him with the Armiger because for some reason I find storing things very easy."
"Oh," Prompto was surprised by the answer but also confused.
He'd seen several of the Glaive train and all of their magic was a shade of blue, well some edged towards purple, but still none of them had such a different colour. So why did Harry? Was it to do with being a Leonis maybe? No…he'd seen Cor summon his sword before and it was nothing like that golden colour either.
He looked down at his mug and forced himself to drink the soup, he didn't feel very hungry, but he knew he needed to eat after everything that had happened.
"So, Noct says you're really good at arcade games, ever thought of trying the real thing?"
"What?" he stared at Harry in confusion. He wasn't suggesting what it sounded like he was, was he? That would never be allowed! He knew how close it had been just letting him go to the same school as Noctis and then when they'd become friends... no matter how friendly the King was, there was no way he'd let Prompto near a gun.
"You've never tried the shooting range? Granted, most Lucian's aren't keen on guns, more likely to use a crossbow, but there are those who use them," Harry shrugged.
"Yeah, learnt with a crossbow first. Didn't pick up firearms till a few years ago," Harry explained and Prompto found himself leaning in, wanting to know more.
Harry grinned and told him about the first time he'd used a sword and then how he'd taken to a crossbow since he'd been a pretty small kid. He'd hunted since it had just been him and his Mum and she'd kept them fairly isolated from the village. Prompto thought that was very unfair on Harry, so what if his Dad had been from Insomnia? Galahd was still technically part of Lucis if everywhere on the mainland still counted despite being pretty much under Imperial control. Hearing about Galahd was really interesting, he hadn't left Insomnia since being brought to the city by Cor and his memories of Niflheim were vague and highly unpleasant.
Harry found himself enjoying talking with Prompto, glad that he had checked out the memories of a lot of the Galahdan refugees so that he could make it sound like he'd really grown up there. In exchange, Prompto could be gently nudged into sharing what it was like growing up in the city. It seemed like that until he'd become friends with Noctis, Prompto's childhood had been as lonely as his own pre-Hogwarts, though thankfully his family was just absent and not like the Dursley's. Yes, he'd checked Prompto's memories, but he'd purposely not kept those memories, that would have been too great an invasion. Other than the information on his implants and some of the training he'd gone through, Harry hadn't kept anything, so it was like he was hearing it all for the first time.
When Prompto began to lag, obviously tired, Harry showed him to the second bedroom and leant him a t-shirt and some sweatpants to sleep in. "Thanks," Prompto yawned and Harry nodded.
"Sleep well, if you need anything just knock," Harry told him before going to his own room and changing before going to bed. The day had not gone at all how it had been planned but the three of them were alive and unharmed.
Regis stared out the window, secure in the knowledge that Noctis was safe in his own bed, Ignis at his side. Harry was also safe in his Citadel quarters with young Prompto in his spare room. There was no danger and yet… he sighed and went to his desk to read the report again. Noctis had managed a barrier, though a shaky one that collapsed rather quickly, had that been due to his work with Harry? He had hoped that his working with Harry to teach him would help Noctis' own magic skills and it seemed to be effective.
Harry had created a far more stable one that had protected them during the crash, his training was definitely coming along well. He needed to find the time to work with his cousin personally at some point, on top of spending some time with both boys. He didn't want Harry thinking his only interest in him was for his magic, he was family and family was important. Eighteen or not, he was still a teenager, it was part of why he hadn't wanted to agree with Cor on sending him out to fight.
Once things settled down, he would need to send Harry off to get the next Royal Arm, probably the Shield of the Just as there was real risk to it, the Tomb was in a clearing and therefore the least dangerous. Best to get the easy and close Arms done first.
Noctis winced as he slowly got out of bed, leg dragging a little. Looked like he'd wrenched his back worse than he'd thought. Most of the afternoon was a blur thanks to the painkillers but obviously he'd been released back to his rooms at some point. He smiled when he found clean, comfortable, clothes laid out in the bathroom for him, obviously Iggy was around. He got in a shower as hot as he could stand it, letting the water pound into his back for a while before washing and then getting dressed.
He found Ignis out in the main room, reading something on his tablet, probably reports from the crash or something. "Hey," he called and Ignis looked up immediately.
"Noct," he stood and moved towards him. "How do you feel?"
He wanted to just say fine but Ignis was clearly worried. "Little groggy and achy," he admitted.
Ignis looked him over and then wrapped an arm around his waist, taking the weight off his bad leg on the way to the couch. "Hungry?"
Ignis got him settled and then went to the kitchenette, returning with a tray of soup and fresh bread. "Shall I call Prompto? He stayed the night with Peverell."
"You can call him Harry you know, he's younger than you," Noctis told him, the soup wasn't as good as Ignis' but he thought Ignis was a better cook than anyone else. "Is Prom okay?"
"Exhausted from what the Marshal said, not surprising considering…"
"Hey, I'm okay, we're all okay. It was just an accident," he reached out and took Ignis' hand, squeezing it. he knew Ignis, he'd be blaming himself for not being there, for somehow not foreseeing a random car accident.
Cor looked up at the knock on his partially open door, waving Harry into his office, the teen closing the door behind him. It had been two weeks since the accident and all three boys were fine, thankfully, although Ignis and Gladio were hovering very protectively over Noctis and Prompto. Since he'd managed to pull off a barrier they'd increased Harry's magical training, bring in Altius since she was the best Mage among the Glaive. Poor kid had very little free time now, but he seemed to be thriving under the pressure. "Hey kid," he greeted, waving to the seat in front of his desk and Harry dropped into it.
"Can I ask you something?"
"Of course," Cor was there to help after all. It was expected that Harry come to him with any questions since they were family.
"It's about Prompto," Harry told him and that worried Cor a little. "It seems to me like Noctis wants him in his Retinue, so I was just curious about why he hasn't had any training? Even if that isn't the plan, shouldn't he at least be taught to escape and evade since he's Noctis' best friend?"
Cor bit back a sigh, Harry was right, Prompto should have received at least some very basic training. "You're correct, Noctis does want Prompto to take the position. He's even mentioned it but Prompto thought he was joking and Noctis hasn't felt comfortable bringing it up again. He's also been very good at dodging invitations to join Noctis in the training rooms."
"Any reason Noctis and I can't drag him along to one of our sessions? I can teach the basics and I'm sure Noctis can too."
"If you can do that I am sure all the boys will be grateful," Cor assured him. He knew Prompto was worried about some buried training or something but against two Lucis Caelum? He didn't see any risk, especially if they were working on hand to hand skills.
"Any idea why he's so…" Harry shrugged, obviously not sure how to word it and Cor hesitated.
"Prompto wasn't just Noctis' first friend, Noctis was his too. With his looks, well, people can be cruel."
That got a grimace. "So self-esteem is in the basement. He said he was adopted as a little kid, even if he is originally from the Empire, taking it out on him is wrong. The anti-immigrant attitude is bad enough, but the way refugees are treated is worse. I'm guessing being friends with Noctis hasn't stopped it? People saying he shouldn't be near him and things like that?"
Cor nodded, there was only so much they could to protect Prompto without starting rumours that could hurt the kid even more.
"Okay. I'll give picking them up from school another go and drag them to training, that way he can't escape."
Cor chuckled. "Have fun with that."
Regis looked up and smiled as Harry was let in, joining him at the small dining table. He'd had dinner with Noctis the night before last and he'd managed to arrange lunch with Harry. Hopefully, next week he'd be able to get together with both his son and cousin at the same time.