“I think we should break up”
The words rang heavy in Kaveh’s head. Even hours later, he couldn’t hear much of anything around him. Despite the loud voices yelling around him at the tavern. The only thing he knew he was capable of doing at the moment was drinking his sorrows away.
Kaveh thought that him and Alhaitham would last forever. They were meant to be.
But he should’ve known that Alhaitham would always choose work over him. It was bound to happen now that he was thinking about it in his very drunken state.
Which glass of wine was he on? He knew he had at least one. Probably more, it was hard to tell at that point.
He laughed softly while continuing to drink his… more than first glass of wine.
Kaveh slowly got up from his seat at the bar and walked over to the first group of people he thought he recognized.
“Hey!” He shouted at them. “How are you guys?”
One of them looked at him and smiled, “pretty good how about yourself?”
“Not the best. I just got broken up with, man.” He laughed, “but I’m already over him! Drinking has helped me not feel anything.”
The next few hours were a blur, and before he realized it. He was wandering the streets of Sumeru City. Kaveh found himself back at Alhaitham’s apartment.
He unlocked the door with the spare key, because he did not have the patience to find his keys in the mess of his pockets.
“HEY! ASSHOLE!” He yelled through the house.
“Kaveh…? Are you drunk?” Alhaitham came out of his room, looking very tired.
“No!” He lied. Alhaitham did not buy it.
“Let’s get you some water and get to sleep.” He said.
Kaveh complied and sat down at the kitchen table. Alhaitham handed him some water, which he quickly drank.
They silently walked towards Kaveh’s room, and as he slipped into bed, he mumbled, “I love you…”
Althaitham hesitantly replied, “I love you too.” Kissing his forehead, “we’ll talk in the morning. Goodnight.”
The world turned dark as sleep overtook him.
Kaveh woke up the next morning with a headache and feeling extremely nauseous. The hangover nausea felt different this morning.
“Fuck.” He mumbled, jumping up to the toilet where he promptly threw up last night's filling of wine.
A few minutes after laying on the floor feeling miserable he realized he had to go talk to Alhaitham. He didn’t want to hear what he didn’t want to hear again, but he couldn’t put it off any longer.
Walking out to the kitchen, he saw him sitting there eating breakfast.
“How’s the hangover?” Asked Alhaitham, who smiled smugly at him.
“You know I feel miserable.”
They sat in silence for a few moments before Kaveh asked the question most on his mind, “why did you want to break up?”
Alhaitham looked down at his breakfast. “I have to take a trip for the Akademiya, it supposedly will take over three years. I can’t have any contact with anyone.” He paused, “I don’t want to do this. But, you should find someone else. You can live here still until I get on your feet again but when I come back…”
“I just want you to be happy.” Said Alhaitham softly, “and I don’t want you waiting for me for years just to find out I never came back. It’s… a very risky journey and I’m not sure I’ll make it.”
“When are you leaving?”
“This morning.” He replied.
“That soon?” Kaveh questioned loudly.
“It’s very urgent and… I can’t discuss it any more.” He got up and grabbed his things. Ask he was walking out the door he reached in his pocket and grabbed the keys, telling Kaveh, “Don’t lose them. The apartment is paid for… for now.”
“I love you Haitham…”
Alhaitham sadly replied, “bye Kaveh.”
Kaveh blamed the throwing up every morning on his depression from his boyfriend leaving.
Tighnari came over one day. They talked for hours before Kaveh mentioned the sickness every morning.
Tighnari looked worried, “do you think you’re pregnant?”
Kaveh’s heart dropped. There was no fucking way. The universe wasn’t that to him, was it?
“I- can’t be… I mean… he’s gone.” Kaveh replied, shaking.
“… but it’s a real possibility?” Tighnari asked.
He thought back to the last time he had his heat… he was 3 months late.
He suddenly started sobbing.
“Hey, calm down okay? We can figure this out.” Tighnari pleaded.
“I can’t raise a child on my own. I can barely take care of myself!” Kaveh cried.
“You know there’s always other options…”
“I can’t do that. I… wouldn’t be able to live with myself. It’s my last reminder of him.” Kaveh said between sobs.
He gasped in realization, “I’ve been drinking like crazy! Oh my god, I’m already an irresponsible parent.”
Tighnari patted his arm, “you didn’t know. It’s okay.”
“Are they going to be okay?”
“You’re probably still in your first trimester, if you stop now, they’re going to be okay.” Tighnari said gently.
The sobs quieted down slowly after a few minutes.
“Okay. I need to get responsible. I need to stop drinking and learn to save my mora.” Announced Kaveh. “I’m going to get my life back on track.”
—- 4 years, 1 month, 16 days later —
Alhaitham was finally done with his journey. It was time to go home. Leading the team of researchers in the desert was difficult, but there was one thing about it that was the most difficult.
Every second of the day he missed the blonde. Kaveh haunted his dreams. He knew he would never regret anything more than having to leave.
He unlocked the door to his apartment, expecting to see it empty and abandoned. But, it looked, lived in? There were drawings on the fridge that looked done by a child, toys scattered all over the floor, and photos on the wall.
He walked over to the pictures placed next to the couch. Realization hit him the moment he picked up a picture and saw the faces and he felt his heart drop.
Kaveh lived here and he had a child. A cute little blonde girl was in the picture smiling with Kaveh’s signature bright smile. How fast did he get over Alhaitham? He looked around the room and there were no pictures of the child’s other father. The only pictures in the room with people other than Kaveh and the girl were with Tighnari and Cyno.
How wasn’t sure how Kaveh had been able to afford all of this stuff. The blonde had never been able to budget.
He went to put the picture down when he heard the door open and when he looked over he saw him.
“ Kaveh ” he breathed.
He left the store in a hurry. He had to get these groceries home and then pick up Lili from daycare. He was exhausted and ready to see his daughter after a long day of work.
His pride and joy. After Alhaitham left him he was distraught and broken. Tighnari and Cyno helped him recover once he found out he was pregnant. They helped take care of him when he had so many bad days. But the moment she came into the world, kicking and screaming. He knew he needed to fight the world for her. Kaveh had a bit of savings after getting out of debt but he was so much more motivated than before she was born. He wanted to give her the best life ever. Even without her father in the picture.
He unlocked the door and when he finally caught sight of the door he saw a face he never thought he would see again.
No, not now. Not yet.
He wasn’t prepared to be looking right into the eyes of Alhaitham. The same eyes his daughter had. The same man who broke his heart and left him before he ever got a chance to finally marry him. This wasn’t how he wanted to do this. He always planned to yell and scream at him when he saw Alhaitham again. But, he couldn’t do anything but stand in silence.
“Kaveh…” he spoke through the silence.
Instead of yelling at him, instead of screaming about how pathetic he was because he left him alone. About how he thought he had died out there. He dropped the groceries on the floor and ran . Slamming the door behind him. Leaving the groceries on the floor.
Kaveh just wanted to see his daughter and hug her tightly. He felt like crying. The tears threatened to spill out his eyes. The man who broke his heart was back and standing in his house.
I mean I guess it wasn’t his house technically…
But, he didn’t want this today. He had a big project he had begun working on. Kaveh could not deal with Alhaitham kicking him and Lili out. The man already broke his heart, he can’t take any more hurt from him.
Kaveh slowed down once he got into town and got to Lili’s daycare.
“Hello Sir!” Said the teacher, “Lili, your father is here.”
His little blonde ray of sunshine looked up from whatever she was doing at the table and ran over to him and gave him a big hug, which he held on to her tighter than normal. “Papa!! I drew something like you do!”
“Oh? What did you draw?” Kaveh asked, letting go, still shaking.
She walked over to the table she was sitting at and grabbed a sheet of paper. She handed it to him and started explaining. “It’s me and you at the park!” She smiled.
Lili was exceptionally talented in art for a three year old. Her teacher told him when the year first started that she had never seen a child her age actually draw the fingers on the hand for people. Granted, it made sense because Kaveh was a talented artist. All she wanted to do was be like her papa. The thought made him smile.
“Oh my! My baby is so talented!” He exclaimed, picking her up. “Alright, say bye to your friends.”
She yelled, “Bye everyone! Let’s go home Papa!” Lili finished, snuggling into his chest.
Oh right, home.
By the time they were out the door, Lili was asleep in his arms. He knew at that moment, looking at his sweet little girl, that Alhaitham didn’t deserve to know that Lili was his daughter.
He couldn’t have his baby get hurt like he did.