my question for you is:
should I try to write this next one in Wheatley’s point of view?
or should I follow my instincts and stick with Chell?
this kind of got away from me, but here you go!
It started with the sneezes. She really should have known then, to be honest. It was how her own illness had started, after all, but he was so good at playing it off.
Don’t worry, love, he’d say, wiping his nose on his sleeve and showing off that disarming smile. It’s just an involuntary, violent expulsion of air through the mouth and nose. Nothing major. A sneeze, it’s called, I believe.
She should have known better.
One sneeze had turned into two, which had turned into many, which had turned into three solid days of runny noses and hasty apologies whenever his explosive new habit caused her to jump. Crockery unfortunately fell victim to this pattern, and not just because of his outbursts. Flailing limbs as he attempted to make up for startling her caused things to fly, as well as his hazardous lizard-like run through the house to the nearest box of tissues when he found himself—well, “leaking,” as he put it. It almost got to the point where she was ready to fashion a tissue box necklace and hang it around his neck if only to keep him in one place long enough to restore her piece of mind.
And still he insisted he was fine. It wasn’t until the dawn of the fourth day that Chell fully realized how bad things had gotten. There were things that she could have blamed for her distraction—work and neighbors and the simple stress of living with Wheatley day in and day out—but the fact was that she had been (totally irrationally) hoping that he might somehow be immune.
So the fourth day dawned. When she awoke, he was not hogging the bathroom in an attempt to out-stare his reflection. He was not in the kitchen, curled in a pathetic ball by the stove as he waited for the kettle to heat. He was not outside waiting by the end of the drive to attempt to chat with the man who delivered the paper. No, Chell found him in the very last place she expected him to be: curled up in bed.
She knocked lightly on the door as she opened it, not so much for permission as for warning. It was plainly unnecessary, though, when she stepped inside the room. He was out like a light. She took a cautious look around and wrinkled her nose.
Outwardly, Wheatley had shown few signs of illness. She supposed it was because he kept it in here. Tissues were strewn across the floor in careless heaps. The bed sheets were hopelessly tangled around the poor man—he’d obviously had a fitful night’s sleep. Mugs of half-drunk tea (another clear sign—he never left a mug of tea half-drunk if he could help it) cluttered the bedside table.
Her eyes turned to the man himself and she sighed upon taking in the circles under his eyes and the sickly paleness of his face. Poor thing. The least she could do is clean up a little—an environment like this was hardly beneficial to his health.
The world Wheatley woke to was fuzzy, but that wasn’t very surprising. Without his glasses, the world was little more than a bunch of smudges. What did surprise him, though, was that the cloud over his vision had spread to fill his ears and his head, making him feel as though he had been stuffed with cotton while he was asleep. He closed his mouth and scrunched up his face when he felt his dry tongue flopping around inside.
A hand on his shoulder got his attention and he sat upright abruptly. There was really only one person he could think that would enter this room and he flinched guiltily when her face swam into semi-clarity. She didn’t seem angry with him for oversleeping, though. Her mouth was set in a stern frown, but her eyes were soft as she looked at him. She pressed a glass into his hand and then motioned for him to drink. He did and almost choked with relief as the water slipped down his throat. After a moment of simply sipping and rehydrating his mouth, he noticed Chell holding out her other hand to him.
When he held out her hand to receive whatever it was, she dumped a pair of capsules in his palm. He recognized them as the ones she’d taken periodically a few weeks ago, when she’d been—oh!
“These’ll make the fuzz go away, then?” he said. His voice was dreadful. “Oh, that sounds bloody awful, dunnit? Like I’ve got gravel stuck up my—” He cut himself off to cough harshly into his hand. Instinct saved him from sloshing water all over himself and also from dropping the pills. When he looked up, Chell had pressed a finger to her lips and looked like she was struggling not to laugh.
He managed to down the pills without killing himself and Chell urged him to drink the rest of the water. When he finished, he began to get up in order to take the glass downstairs. He knew she wouldn’t much notice his tea mugs disappearing, but the glass was one of the nice set she’d bought to replace the damage he’d done to the last one. Much to his surprise, however, Chell pushed down on his shoulders, forcing him to get back in the bed.
“What?” he croaked. She gave him a glare and pointed at him again, as if to reinforce what she’d just done. “Love, I can’t stay in bed all day. I’ve got to—” Again, he broke off to cough. Her glare doubled in intensity and she crossed her arms at him, as if to say I told you so. “Alright, alright. I’ll stay.”
She took the glass from him and sent him one last meaningful look before she made a gesture to suggest she’d be back. When the door clicked shut behind her, Wheatley couldn’t help his bewildered smile.
this actually has very little to do with the prompt but you know what I don’t care because it took me like a week to write it so bully for you
One morning she wakes up and makes herself a coffee. There’s a sound outside and the next thing she knows, coffee is dripping down the wallpaper and ceramic is in shards around her feet. Wheatley comes bounding down the stairs to see what’s the matter and stops in the doorway when she holds up her hands. He only has to take one look at the floor and the expression on her face to understand. He goes and gets the broom.
She pulls out the chair at the table with a clatter and sits herself heavily in it, staring between her fingers at his feet as he sweeps up the soggy mess. It isn’t the first time this has happened. She knows it won’t be the last. She remains in her seat long after Wheatley has thrown out the broken porcelain and mopped the coffee up from the floor. She doesn’t look up when he drags out the chair next to hers and sits calmly at the table.
“Shepherd’s car backfiring?” he asks quietly.
She shuts her eyes and nods. Her lower lip trembles and she pulls it between her teeth, biting down hard enough to make her eyes burn and her fingers twitch. He notices, of course, and slides his hand across the table toward her. She flinches away and he stops. Without having to look, she knows that she’s hurt him. Without having to hear, he knows that she’s sorry. He stands and crosses the kitchen, passing the coffee pot over for the electric kettle nestled in the corner. He fills it and plugs it in, humming a tune that she might have known once that he probably doesn’t know either.
“How about some tea this morning?” he says casually. They both studiously avoid looking at the coffee stain on the wall. She nods when he turns to look at her, and he smiles.
As she passes him to get the milk, she briefly wraps her arms around him in a tight, heartfelt hug.
Okay just making sure everyone knows this before we begin, but Ace is the reason I got into Portal so I’m going to talk about her a lot.
WHEW this took a while.
writer’s block is a bitch but i will fill every one if it kills me.
that Ace forgot you when she posted about her lovely, lovely, smutty Chelley fic.
It’s the best of the best (in my personal opinion) and employs our mutual headcanon about the Portal universe that’s actually quite complicated to explain but I’ll just quote her original post on the subject:
Basically, what you need to know: human!Wheatley, andriod!cores and android!GLaDOS. Takes place during ‘The Escape.’ And instead of a few hours, it’s been nearly a month since Wheatley woke Chell up from stasis.
One of these days, we’ll find the time to explain it in more detail (if we don’t get HAF finished first).
ANYWAY, HERE’S THE LINK.
you like me! you really, really like me!
now I’ve actually got to write them all.
this is a response to an ask that I fudged up when I asked people to give me Chelley prompts. In response to your question, Lessie, the invitation was (and still is!) open to anyone on the Chelley tag who wanted a fanfiction. :D
It’s always a surprise, but a wonderful and delighted one, when he manages to make her laugh. He’s never quite sure what it is that sets her off and, sadly, she’s never able to explain. And while he wishes he knew—his facial expressions? His hands? His god-awful timing?—there’s a part of him that’s glad he can’t recreate it. Jokes get tired, after all, and he never wants her tired of him.
But, oh, does he love it when she laughs. When she simply lets herself get carried away by the mirth. Her head thrown back, her arms clutching her stomach, tears forming in the corners of her eyes as she shakes with the heaves from her diaphragm. Color lights up her cheeks and her eyes sparkle like liquid diamonds and, best of all, is the sound.
When they met it was the one thing she could deny them—the sound of her voice, the satisfaction of a response. Her control was rigid, totally unmoving. It’s something he understands now, at least better than he did then. He appreciates and relishes it now, the timbre and tone. The way it burbles and catches and makes her shake when, for some reason, she can’t hold herself back. He feels proud that something about him is able to reach past that control. It shatters like so many panes of carefully constructed glass and he smiles and smiles and smiles, feeling even more giddy than he looks because that was his fault and for once it feels good to claim it.
The best part about it—the absolute best—is that she hardly ever laughs for anyone else. And never, never does she laugh with such abandon for anyone but him. It astonishes him when he realizes it, but maybe it shouldn’t. He is her comedian, her very first friend, and no one will ever know her better.
She makes a point of tracking the days. Each night before bed he watches as she carefully crosses them off her calendar to signify that they have passed. When he asks, she simply tells him that she likes to know. The marking of time was a privilege long denied her, and like all things she was denied in that place, she likes to keep it safe and close. He catches her glancing at the clocks, or tracking the sun when they go outside. At first it unnerves him but he gets used to it quickly, almost coming to count on the regular turn of her head.
A year passes and she doesn’t notice.
He’s not quite sure what she’s so broken up about when she finally realizes, three weeks after the relevant date. He’s not sure she knows much, either, only that she is. He wishes dearly that he knew what to do about the malaise that overtakes her, but his experiences with the outside world are as limited as hers, if not more so. At least there was a time she’d seen the light of day before then.
It takes prodding to get her up to go to the shops with him—she still doesn’t quite trust him to go out on his own, but doesn’t seem to want to leave the house very much. While they’re out, he spies a selection of greeting cards, one that he’s passed several times before today but have never quite caught his notice. There is an entire section for the occasion of an “anniversary,” but the meaning of the word is lost on him. He picks one up to read the inside and his eyebrows shoot straight up his forehead. He must make some kind of surprised noise, because Chell begins to turn. He jams the card back in its slot and shoves his hands in his pockets before she has time to see. He smiles beatifically at her, hiding the fact that the gears are noisily turning inside his head.
One year, three weeks, and six days after their escape from Aperture Laboratories, Chell wakes and comes downstairs to make coffee, only to find the coffee maker is already going. Wheatley watches her from the table, bags under his eyes from being up all night. He smiles when she turns to look at him and gestures at the table. Sitting in her place is a large box, wrapped haphazardly in shiny silver paper. For a moment she simply stares before slowly drawing closer and picking up the card tucked underneath the rather shabbily knotted bow.
For a moment he is worried that he’s done something wrong when he sees the tears sliding down her face, but when she lunges at him and wraps her arms around him in a fierce embrace, he knows that he’s finally gotten it right. The card is clutched tightly in her hand still.
Happy anniversary of the day we escaped.
It’s a while before she gets around to actually opening her present.
His hands are large and warm with fingers like spider-legs. The way they wiggle and wave when he talks entrances her, half the reason already for her silence. She thinks sometimes that if she could just watch him flap his hands about for the rest of her life, she’d be plenty entertained.
The first time she notices them is, quite unironically, the first time she meets him. She remembers the way he burst into that room, pushing her back with his sheer exuberance alone, the way he put his hands on her shoulders and told her, quite calmly and seriously, that it was possible—just possible—that she might have a minor case of serious brain damage. The words were lost on her then, but the warmth of his hands after so long without human contact stuck with her.
They’re surprisingly bony, fingers as ridiculously scrawny as the rest of him, with knuckles that stand out clearly. They’re never uncomfortable in hers, though, just warm and occasionally sweaty when she whispers in his ear. (She always feels a little proud of herself when she feels his nails digging into the back of her hand.) Sometimes, when she’s sure he’s occupied, she’ll stare down at their joined fingers and marvel at how they even fit together. Her hands are smallish and criss-crossed with scars, and they practically disappear when he takes them in his own. For a while then she can pretend that they are normal and this is normal and then forgets when he brings them to his lips and kisses the pad of each finger.
There are calluses on his fingertips, from both from now and from before. She watches sometimes, as he discovers a new talent, a new something at which he’s surprisingly Not Bad, because of his dexterous fingers. The joy lights up his face and those spider-legs kick and curl with his excitement. If she’d ever worried how he’d do on the outside, she knows she needn’t now.