(I am not the author, and I have gained permission from the author to post this on eir behalf!!)
Bertolt was running late.
Normally you’d be fine with this, but not today. Bertolt wasn’t great at keeping track of the time--neither of you were, really--but you’d think that today he would be so anxious that he wouldn’t be late.
Maybe it was traffic? Christmas Eve was also so busy that you know you shouldn’t blame him.
You groan, wrapping the blankets around your shoulders tighter. You were supposed to go out tonight with Annie and Pieck, but Bertolt was late.
If he didn’t show up soon, you would just stay home and wait for him...Though you know he would encourage otherwise. ‘Go have fun with Annie and Pieck,’ he’d say, ‘I’ll come home and make us some tea’. But you didn’t want to go have fun with them right now. You just wanted to cuddle with your boyfriend and have him reassure you that nothing was wrong.
You stare wordlessly into the empty fireplace. Cold, dark...Like yourself...Ugh, maybe that was a little too dark. But everything was just so frustrating right now...You’d been waiting for him for almost 2 hours. Stupid depression.
Bertolt struggles with it too, but you know his anxiety is worse. You would tell yourself that you’re being selfish, but it really wouldn’t be. It’s okay to feel bad. You weren’t a bad person because of it. Bertolt could argue with you for hours on how amazing he thought you were. He was so sweet. You would do the same for him if he ever felt bad. Beat that stupid depression with a stick.
You rest your head on the couch cushion and feel around for your phone behind you on the other cushion, grabbing it and yanking it into your lap when you finally find it. You tab over to messages, then Bertolt’s messages, and stare blankly at the last sent messages.
‘I’m on my way home,’ it reads. You’d texted back with an ‘ok! (heart)’, but that was sent nearly two hours ago. It was only a 45 minute drive from Bertolt’s work.
What if he really wasn’t at work? You know he wouldn’t cheat on you, but you don’t know where he could’ve gone. He wouldn’t ditch your plans, either.
Maybe his car broke down? That’s the best case scenario, behind traffic.
Silently, you type in a message. ‘Are you almost home?’ You hit send, press the button to turn off the screen and set it down beside you.
Pulling the blanket more onto your shoulders, you stand up and move to turn the fireplace on. It starts up, warmth already beginning to cascade out from behind the glass.
Annie and Pieck probably already headed out, so you were free to do whatever now. Maybe you could make some tea for when Bertolt got back? He could come back to you ready to cuddle and fall asleep in bed. That'd be fine, so long as he was with you.
You hear the door knob jiggle and the door squeak open. You look up expectantly to the entrance hall, joy spreading over you when Bertolt pokes his head around.
“Hey,” he says, softly, “Sorry I'm late, the traffic was terrible.” You grin at him, jumping up to greet him. He kicks his shoes off as quickly as he can and gathers you in his arms and kisses you.
His jacket is cold and his cheeks and nose are red. You lean up to kiss his nose, cupping his cheeks with your hands.
“Your cheeks are so cold,” You mumble, “Should we make some tea?”
He hums, stepping back and out of your grasp to shrug off his jacket. Ugly sweater, of course. Adorable.
“You don't want to go out with Annie and Pieck?” He asks. You look away before shaking your head.
“I'd like to just stay home with you tonight,” you reply. He licks his lips and smiles at you.
“That sounds good to me. I could go put some water on if you text them?” You nod in response and he pads off to your small kitchen, socks sliding along the floor.
You settle back onto the floor in front of the couch, grabbing your phone to tab over to messages. Surprisingly, Pieck’s texted you. ‘We decided to stay home’ and ‘see you tomorrow’. You shrug and text back a similar message, setting your phone aside.
Bertolt soon comes back into the room and sits down on the couch next to you.
“I'm making hot chocolate,” he explains, leaning over to kiss your forehead.
“Oof,” you mumble, “I love you so much.” He goes quiet for a moment before standing up.
“I love you too,” he mumbles, face turning red. He quickly shuffles off to the kitchen and you stare after him in confusion. He was nervous. Did you say something?
You're a little nervous yourself when he comes back, holding two cups. He gives you one and settles down next to you on the floor.
The two of you sit together in front of the fire in silence, sipping at your hot chocolate every few minutes.
His knee was fidgeting like it did whenever he was overthinking things. You set your nearly empty cup down beside you and lean your head on his shoulder, placing one hand on his and intertwining your fingers.
“I've been thinking,” Bertolt stammers out, “That I love you a lot.” You nod, closing your eyes and ready to fall asleep against him.
“And I talked to Annie and Pieck about it earlier--I'm sorry it took so long,” he mumbles. You sit back up, confused. He was at Pieck’s house earlier? Before you can ask about him, he places a small box in your hand. You blink in shock, unsure of what was going on.
“Please marry me,” he spits out. You only gape in response.
You'd talked about it before, but you never really thought he would propose to you. You can't formulate words. Nothing was coming out. You were too shocked.
“Reiner…?” Bertolt murmurs, anxiously examining your face. His eyes flick back and forth and then he's wiping tears from your cheeks that you didn't know were there.
“Yes,” you whisper. Bertolt breaks out into a grin and suddenly he's crying too and wrapping his arms around you.
“I love you so much,” you cry, “I'll gladly marry you.” Bertolt can't even handle a response, and you can't tell if he's crying or laughing. He tries to kiss you and ends up kissing your cheek and you burst out into laughter.
“I love you too,” Bertolt laughs, “You're so wonderful.”
“You're pretty great yourself,” you laughed. His face is still flushed and he leans down to kiss you again.
You both lean away and you open the small ring box, nervous about what was inside.
The ring was simple, silver and you loved it with all your being. Bertolt nervously fits it on your finger and stares down and your hand.
“Did you get yourself a ring?” You hesitantly ask.
“I, uh...kinda forgot to,” Bertolt coughs, “I was so focused on getting yours. We can go pick out a matching one in a few days if you want?”
You smile at him, holding his hand and locking your fingers together.
“I'd love to,” You mumble, resting your head on his shoulder.
You finally begin to doze off in front of the fire with your fiancé.