Updated: Jul 29, 2019
"How?" he asked keeping his voice calm.
Over the years if there was anything that Keith had learned and deeply enrooted in himself, it was to show close to no emotions. Regardless of how successful he had been in his position, there would always be someone who would question his authority in the Blade of Marmora. The last thing he wanted was to be branded as the "emotional leader". Again.
"We don't know. It seemed as if they appeared out of nowhere." Acxa responded while dismissing the others so that only she and Keith would be in the room.
As soon as the last person left and the door slid shut, Keith threw his dagger at the wall in front of him.
"How the fuck, do we not know by now?!" his voice rose, booming all across the room. Keith felt a pinch on his bottom lip and raised his fingers to wipe the blood away.
His head fell as he tried to take in a few deep breaths.
"Niebieski," he whispered to himself.
As Keith began to relax, he felt his canines retract. "Sorry," he apologized before walking towards the wall to retrieve his dagger.
"Don't be. It is shameful that we haven't found out who is behind this yet." Acxa paused to look at Keith for a brief moment, "But, I know this is harder on you because Kolivan assigned you this mission personally."
"It's just another mission." Keith walked past Acxa and began to pull up information from their most recent attempt to carry out the mission.
Truth is, this wasn't just another mission. It was way too personal. Not only because Kolivan assigned him the mission but also because this is the most he has seen his fellow BOM lose lives. It reminded him of the three years he and the rest of Voltron went missing. Except for this time, it was all happening right under his nose.
"Zethrid says you have a visitor. Should we let them in?" Acxa asked.
"Sure." Keith wasn't paying much attention to his surroundings anymore. He was too busy trying to figure out where they went wrong, where he went wrong.
Keith was so engrossed in his work that his attention diverted only when someone cleared their throat a second time. That also because they were exceptionally loud this time.
“Yes?” he asked a little annoyed but still keeping his eyes glued to the screens in front of him.
“I see that you still keep your mullet.”
Keith froze momentarily. He knew the owner of this voice, very well. “Yeah, it seemed to not bother anyone else." He paused the first pov camera, rewound it a couple of seconds and pressed play.
“You can at least spare me a look while you talk to me.” The voice was firm and it sounded like it came from behind gritted teeth.
“I don’t have time for this, Lance.”
“Yeah! I know! Do you think I would have come here if I had other options?”
Keith flinched and took a step back. Somehow Lance’s words hurt him physically. He was Lance’s last choice, then again why was he even surprised?
For the first time, in a long time, their eyes met.
A shiver ran down Keith’s spine. Memories he tried to keep suppressed all flooded back. The memories of their time together in Voltron. But that wasn’t the memory that haunted him, it was the memories years after Voltron disbanded. Memories of their time together. Memories of how they fell apart, because of Keith.
Lance looked like he hadn’t slept in deca-phoebs. His hair was not as proper as he usually kept it and Keith knew it wasn’t Lance’s bed hair either. You could spot vivid evidence of struggle behind those protruding cheekbones and under-eye bags.
Guilt. That is what Keith felt now. Just pure guilt.
Moments passed by and neither of them spoke, they just looked at each other.
“Ni bay ski?”
Lance started chuckling, “we’ll get there.”
Keith smiled and nuzzled his face against Lance’s neck. “Why do I need to learn this when I can just say blue?”
“Because blue is too basic and azul is too predictable so you will learn the Polish word. It’s more personal like that.” Keith pulled back to look at Lance grinning.
Without skipping a heartbeat, he placed a gentle kiss on the Cuban boy’s cheek.
“For you, I’ll do anything,” Keith promised.
“Niebieski,” Keith whispered so softly that he almost couldn’t hear himself. He wanted to run and hug the boy in front of him. He wanted to tell Lance how he was sorry. He wanted to tell him that he would fix everything. He wanted to tell him how he would protect Lance with his last breath. Keith wanted to tell so many things but all he could muster was silence.
He gulped and quickly cleared his throat.
“How can we help?”
Lance snickered; he didn’t know why he expected Keith to show any emotions. He should have known better than to expect that his presence would affect the all so powerful leader of the Blade of Marmora.
“There have been attacks lately, my farm alone was attacked five times in the last week.” He waited to see if there would be any reactions. Nothing. “We tried fighting them off, but it was as if we couldn’t even see them. I asked pidge but she…. She had other more pressing matters. So, did everyone else.”
Lance closed his eyes, trying to hold back the tears that threatened to spill.
The Cuban boy raised his hands to stop Keith from continuing to speak. The last thing he needed was pity.
“I made everyone evacuate. It’s just me there now, well now there’s no one but I am going to go back. I can’t let them destroy the farm. It’s all I got, Keith.”
He blinked, clearing the fogginess as the tears streamed down his cheeks.
“You got us. Whatever you need, Lance. Blade of Marmora has your back.”
Keith started walking towards Lance but stopped as the emergency alarm started blaring.
“You need to get to safety. Acxa!” Keith called out over the comms “Give Lance a suit and get him a sniper rifle.” He turned to look at Lance, “how rusty are you, sharpshooter?”
Lance wiped his tears away and stood in front of Keith with determination. “As rusty as your dagger,” he said with a smile.
Keith nodded, not knowing how else to handle the heart palpitation. Lance’s smile is still the most precious thing to him.
As soon as Acxa came to take away Lance, Keith ran to his own station. Before he could speak into the comms to give orders, he felt a pain at the back of his head.
As he was passing out, he saw a spec of blue light. And then the rest was darkness.