warnings: Naked torsos, kissing, emoing out, lots of AU religious crap.
AN: Made for simhaven’s march challenge, I know its a stretch, but you know me, I just can’t write a simple story that sticks to a damn prompt. haha, anywho I thought that rebelling against the institution of marriage, society & the church, would just have to do for ‘authority’. – Costanzo is goodbye_sun’s Daniel sim. And Thomas is basically the same sim as Rainer & Sailor. And just for good measure I don’t know anything about religion in the mediaeval times, so I just made shit up as I went along.. his church attire has bats on it for fucks sake hahaha (okay so monk stuff is not something that I have in my dl folder)
Thomas was almost afraid to turn his head, he knew that voice! A voice he had never thought he would hear again. And yet here he was in the flesh and blood, Costanzo. Thomas felt ill, to the point of passing out. Yet the father had left him in charge of the confession booth, seeing as he had more pressing matters to attend to. Thomas took a deep breath, “What are your sins my son?” He asked, his voice bland and mechanical.
Costanzo turned his head and eyed the dark profile at the other side of the window. “I have betrayed my own heart, and spoken falsely to the one it holds.” Costanzo sighed, “I have been unfaithful in the flesh, on several occasions, but never in spirit.”
“Go on.” Thomas croaked out, wishing he was anywhere else. he would swap with the plague doctors to just stop this. His hands trembled, and his mouth was dry. How had Costanzo found him? He had hid so well! He had run so far, almost to the end of the world, and then he had hid here, wanting God to wash away any memory of his former life, he had wanted absolution, but found that none were to be had. And now that old pain lurched inside his heart, he couldn’t do this! He couldn’t look Costanzo in the eyes and forgive him, even if it was not him he asked. He might be a servant of God, but he was just a man. Not a miracle maker.
For a long while Costanzo was silent, the only sound in the confession booth was Thomas’ slightly panicked breathing. Costanzo stood up and pushed the chair aside, looking directly at Thomas at the other side. So close, yet so far away. “Thomas.” He said softly. “I travelled far to ask for your forgiveness.”
Thomas shut his eyes hard, and bit his lip, anything to not voice the strangled whimper he felt in his chest. “I cannot forgive you.” He finally whispered.
“Only God can forgive you.” Thomas whispered broken. “Return to your wife and children, and your sins shall be forgiven.”
“No.” Thomas knew that if he looked upon Costanzo he would surely weep, and feel his heart break all over.The dull ache in his chest became a sharp twang of guilt, as he heard Costanzo whisper.
“I miss you.”
Costanzo sighed as he looked at the drape that separated him from the main church room. “Maybe.. Do you think that Eden holds a place for us in the afterlife?” He said, hating how vunrable he sound.
“I honestly don’t know.” For the briefest of seconds Thomas looked up at Costanzo before he looked away again. “You received your penance, why are you still here?” He asked, an angry tone to his voice, but he couldn’t stand that soft voice, he remembered all too well how it used to whisper sweet words of love in his ears, and how those soft lips.. Thomas pressed the heel of his hand against his forehead as did that stop his train of thoughts.
“I don’t care for God’s forgiveness, I know what I feel in my heart, and a feeling this pure cannot be wrong.” He wrapped his arms around himself, “Maybe to man, but surely not to God.” A small smile came to his lips, “I came here for your forgiveness. Tell me you never loved me, and I shall walk away this instant, and never return.” He knew it was a gamble, but he could tell that Thomas was about to bolt the booth, and this was the first time he had seen his hearts desire in six years. “I know you loved me just as much as I love you, I could hear it in your voice when you said my name, could feel it in your touch.”
“Costanzo.” Thomas said, his voice tired and sad. “I beg you to not speak more.” He sucked in his breath, and fisted his hands, “I beg you to stay silent and leave.” When Costanzo didn’t answer, nor left, Thomas eased a little, could he lie like this under the roof of God’s house? He was no saint, just a man who’s heart had been brutally ripped apart, by the same man who now asked forgiveness. And to his own frustration Thomas could not find any in his heart. “I loved you, I held you dearer than my life.” he bit his lip again, resting his head in his hands. “It was the devil testing me, I know this now.” He said, sounding anything but convinced himself.
Costanzo leaned against the window that separated them, frustrated that he couldn’t reach the man on the other side. He would do anything to take the pain out of his beloveds voice, but he also knew he had put it there himself. “You are wrong.” He said firmly. “It was not the devil.”
Thomas nodded, mostly to agree with his own reasoning. “He offered me temporary sanctuary in the shape of you.” He stared off into the boarded wall of the booth. “If.. If you… No, this is my punishment, my own purgatory.”
Thomas jumped, startled. And for the first time looked up at Costanzo. “I am sorry you travelled so far for something you will not receive. I cannot offer you absolution.” He took a deep breath and looked away from Costanzo’s furious gaze. “You crushed my heart, my dreams, my very soul. And even if I have stayed here to mend through prayer and penance for my selfishness, the wound is as raw as the day you made it.”
“You married that harlot, and made me watch and smile throughout the entire ceremony.” He hung his head, “Oh Lord I wanted to draw my sword and cut her down for making a mockery of my heart.” Still staring at the ground, Thomas shook his head, “I was your loyal esquire, I would have laid down my life for you, yet this was the one frontier I could not conquer at your side, I could never be her. I watched my love for you, turn stale, and then turn to resentment. This is why I cannot forgive you, it is because I cannot forgive my self.”
“I did what I had to! It was my duty! My family dictated it so. Had I seen a way out of it, besides death, I would have taken it!” Costanzo raged, hitting the frame again, making the entire booth shake and complain in the woodwork.
Thomas frowned, “Does ‘That God has joined, men must not divide.’ Mean that little to you?”
“My union with her, has nothing to do with God!” Costanzo fumed. “I came here to ask you to come home with me, I can’t think of anyone else I would rather live or die beside.” His voice was frantic and desperate now. “We could go to war in the holy land. Maybe we can know the peace in death that we cannot have in life?”
“Stop. Just, stop.” Thomas cried. “Please, I beg you to return home to your family.”
Costanzo angrily pulled the drape aside and stepped out into the church. “I curse your God! I see no salvation in self-inflicted denial!” He yelled, his voice echoed off the walls, and so did his steps as his angry strides took him closer to the door out.
Thomas carefully stepped out of the booth, and watched Costanzo’s back as he left. He wanted to call his name, he wanted so badly to call out for him. Maybe he would smile and casually touch his hand, letting it linger longer than he had to? But he didn’t call out, and the heavy doors to the church slammed with a heavy definitive sound.
The city was not larger than he could find a stranger, and a nobleman. His heart hammered in his chest as he knocked the door, hearing Costanzo on the other side calling for him to enter. He almost left right there, but he told himself he had faced foes far deadlier than this, and if he did not go in, his soul would forever hunger for something he could not have. He was sick and tired of longing. “Costanzo.” He said softly, keeping his gaze to the floor, closing the door behind him. Dear lord, he could not remember when he had been more afraid, and exposed.
Costanzo turned around and stared at Thomas, “I have no need for a man of God.” he huffed.
“I..” Thomas stammered, “I come here as naught but Thomas.”
For the longest time there was just silent, and then Costanzo finally cleared his throat and looked a little suspiciously at Thomas. “I thought our discussion was over.” He said slightly bitterly. “What can you possibly have to add to the insults? You sat there in your church and made a mockery of my confession, and if you are going to continue that, you should just leave.”
Thomas blushed slightly from shame. “I did not intend to make a mockery of you.” He shrugged, “Maybe I have just spent almost five years pending, waiting for God to answer me. To explain to me somehow, why my love for you was not enough, why it was not the right kind. But the answer I received was that a love like mine is an abomination, it should not be.” Thomas fiddled with the hem of his cowl, and a little smile graced his lips. “What does he know? I admired you, adored you, and when I fell in love I knew it was true, there will never be another for me. God cannot fill that space, no matter how badly I want him to.” Costanzo opened his mouth to speak, but Thomas stopped him with a gesture of his hand. “You called me your light, your beacon, remember?”
“I do.” Costanzo said softly.
“The way you made my body and heart sing.” Thomas whispered, “It felt so true, so real, I cannot understand why that should be wrong, but the Bible says..” His words trailed off, and he looked up at Costanzo. “Why did the heavenly father not heal me? I prayed, cried and pleaded, would he only erase you from my memory. But he never did. Maybe I am just too lost for redemption..”
“Thomas.” Costanzo said, taking Thomas’ hand in his, squeezing it lovingly, amused by the tremor he felt from the other. “There is nothing wrong with you, you are a loyal and righteous man, I know this to be true. You are both my best friend and beloved, I cannot begin to tell you what heartache I have felt, being without your guidance and kisses for so long.”
“..But your wife?”
“She is the imposter in my bed, not you.” Costanzo said and smiled, slowly raising Thomas’ hand kissing his knuckles. “These are not the hands of a man of God, these are the hands of a fighter, a swordsman.” He paused, opening Thomas’ hand, planting a kiss in it’s calloused palm. “I owe my life to these hands and their master, more than once. Tell me this, does your God step between you and a spear?”
“N-no” Thomas whispered, staring at his hand in Costanzo’s.
“Stay.” Costanzo said softly, trying to keep Thomas’ gaze as he placed their hands on his naked chest, over his heart, hoping that Thomas would feel it too. “I love you still, you are still my light, my salvation, and my reason for being a better man.”
Thomas stared at the floor, Costanzo let go of his hand, and walked away, over to the fire place. Thomas felt his heart beat at an impossible speed, maybe it was true? A part of him wanted to just leave, ignore this screaming urge to wrap his arms around Costanzo, run home and pray for his immortal soul till he passed out. Yet another part of him wanted to feel those hands and lips again, abandoning all reason. Why was he so conflicted? He had come here, had he not? Thomas had to ask himself why he had tracked Costanzo down, why he had knocked on his door, if it was not to feel alive. God could not do that, his teachings was all about living a humble life, so that one might harvest the fruit of the afterlife. Thomas looked up at Costanzo’s back by the fireplace, seeing the cuts and scars from war. So why was taking another man’s life not a sin, if only you did it in God’s name? Nothing made you feel more alive than the rush of battle, he could still recall the fire in his veins, wiping blood from his sight. Nothing besides giving yourself over to love, this too made your skin feel ablaze, but for another reason. Maybe there was indeed a place in Eden for people like them, Thomas liked to believe there was, he desperately needed to believe there was. He wet his lips and said “I want to be alive again.” He looked demurely away from the naked Costanzo, “I care not for the consequences, in this life or the afterlife.”
Costanzo smiled as he heard the soft rustle of the heavy fabric of Thomas’ cowl hit the floor. And soft barefoot footsteps towards him. A hand on his shoulder, gently turning him around. “Are you sure you are ready to leave this behind?” Costanzo asked softly.
“Yes.” Thomas looked directly into Costanzo’s dark eyes, “I still cannot forgive you.” He admitted.
“Then i will ask you for it every day, till the end of days. Hopefully you will eventually know my request to be true.”
hahaha he made the best pissy face ever!