Thanks to mashimoshi for the help on this one. This story will be approximately five short chapters, each from a different character's perspective, before the concluding epilogue. Let me know what you think!
"For fuck's sake, JJ, what were you thinking?"
Head falling back against the wall, John B tried to ignore the shouting. Had he succeeded, it would've been a feat for the history books. After all, the arguing couple was just three feet away, in the same room as him. It wasn't exactly uncommon for Kiara and JJ to fight. The blond was still a reckless hothead and his brunette girlfriend was still diplomatic and reasonable. John B's problem, however, was that he, the only one stupid enough to try to mediate between the two, didn't have a clue what they were arguing about. Usually, he was around when the fight started. That night, however, they'd come running into the Chateau, already bickering. JJ was trying to brush something off that clearly had riled Kiara up.
They'd been like that since the beginning, really. John B had always found that ironic, considering who they were. Kiara was the one who stayed out of trouble, JJ was the one who couldn't go a full day without it. Yet, when they fought, Kiara was the one who got all fired up while JJ was laid back. It made no sense and, frankly, John B wondered if anything about them made sense.
He'd been there when it started. Well, technically. They hadn't known he was there. Whatever. They'd been arguing then too, about Kiara's kiss with Pope. That alone had been enough for John B to do a double-take. Mostly because he was offended that he hadn't been told. He and Sarah had only been gone for a week, for Christ's sake, it wasn't like they could've just forgotten. The real shock about that fight had been seeing JJ kiss Kiara. A pause in the fight, an opportunity to step in and help them figure it out, had caused him to peek around the corner, into the kitchen. His kitchen, not that they seemed to care. He'd expected to see them glaring at each other or something. Not practically devouring each other like their lives depended on it. In his kitchen, damnit. How was he supposed to eat there after a sight like that?
After that fight, he'd started to make note of the little things, trying to find anything that could explain how the hell they made it work. John B was perfectly aware that he could ask them. Did he dare to? No. Sarah had asked once and they'd gotten about three words out before they were smiling sappily between kisses. Blergh. While there hadn't ever been any real boundaries between John B and JJ, he really could do without seeing the blond slip his hands under Kiara's shirt. Really. The only 'under-the-clothes' action John B as interested in was between him and Sarah. Not two people he considered family. Once, they'd practically indulged in foreplay on the HMS Pogue. In protest, John B and Pope had pushed them into the water. Sarah called them dramatic. The guys insisted that they were traumatized.
When the couple fought, however, they all kind of missed the R-rated moments. Fights between them were, more often than not, explosive. Though they rarely fought over little things anymore, the big things usually ended in big arguments. JJ's reckless tendencies. Kiara's parents. The fact that JJ didn't just leave his dad. The fact that Kiara was with him despite what people said behind her back. John B couldn't keep up. His arguments with his own girlfriend usually covered smaller things, like toothbrushes and how she didn't like how he peeled his oranges.
Despite the fights, it was clear that JJ and Kiara loved each other. John B had been doubtful of the relationship at first. Everyone was. But then he saw the things they did for each other, all because they genuinely were in love with each other. One of the moments that well and truly cemented his opinion of them had occurred just after Kiara and her folks had argued. About JJ. Again. They didn't like him and they liked Kiara's relationship even less.
Like with his discovery of their relationship, John B hadn't actually meant to see it. Even though it was his house. As per usual, really. He'd just come back from a day spent in the marshes when he heard a quiet sniffling from the bathroom. It hadn't taken a lot of thinking to figure out who was in there. Sarah was out with Wheezie and Pope was helping his dad, leaving only Kiara and JJ. And since JJ hadn't come fishing with him, John B figured that they were together. Too nosey for his own good, he'd leaned against the doorframe to his room, listening in on the conversation audible through the crack in the bathroom door.
"Kie, c'mon, you gotta talk to them."
"They don't understand JJ, they don't respect that this is my choice."
"I know that, Princess," he replied quietly, "I just… Don't let me be the reason you don't talk to your folks."
"JJ, I love you," Kiara declared fiercely, "Nothing will ever change that."
A beat of silence had followed before the blond whispered that he loved her too. The way his best friend's voice sounded had told John B everything he needed to know. Their relationship, no matter how odd and mismatched, was one that would last. No matter how much they fought, they always figured their shit out, with or without help. Now, did John B do his best to mediate? Yes. Why? Well, partially because he seemed to have some sort of affinity for almost dying and partially because, well, no matter how little they made sense to him, he loved them both and wanted them to be happy together.
Even if they got all hot and heavy in his house. Too many times. Like, constantly. For fuck's sake, it was his house. He needed to take back the keys and then change the locks or something. Except JJ picked locks. Head falling back against the wall, John B groaned quietly to himself. The shouting was getting louder and since he was rather fond of his general physical health, he couldn't kick them out. He was in for a long night.