40-odd years, and there are still things Chappell hates about Mr. Night. He doesn’t like being the one in the relationship who’s at a disadvantage. He doesn’t like not knowing where the fuck Night goes, and not being able to find out, or how he can simply be gone–gone in ways nothing born of man can. 

But he always comes back, sooner or later. Chappell likes to be ready for it. 

“There you are,” he greets, when the shadows on the old red-upholstered chair grow too thick to see through. “Been wondering when you’d come around again.” 

“Good evening, Chappell,” comes that dark voice that rattles in his jawbone the same way his own voice does. “You seem to be in a good mood.” 

And yeah, he is. He hums to himself while he cracks open a bottle and pours a couple fingers each into two scotch glasses. “Sure am. Got my hands on something I’ve been after for a bit.” He scoops up both glasses and heads over, dangling one from his fingertips in front of Night on his way past to drop into his own favorite chair–overstuffed cognac leather, so well-used it’s practically suede. 

Night balances the glass in his long, claw-tipped fingers, holding up the amber liquid before his glinting eye. Chappell watches with a sly grin while he sniffs it, then takes a sip–then peers at it again. “I appear to be drinking…soil?” He takes another sip. “Very interesting, spicy soil.” And another, the length of him coiling in on the glass as if he’s sinking into it. He likes it. 

Chappell drinks his own–figs and pepper and smoke thick as if he’s drinking a peat bog caught on fire. “40 year old Laphroig,” he gloats. “Been trying to get my hands on this for a year now.”

Night sways, hypnotic as a cobra, and hums strange, happy notes to himself over his scotch, and Chappell feels a little smug. For all the things about Night he can’t control even after all these years, he’s still got the power to surprise the ancient nightmare with new experiences.

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