an interesting point of view
Rumpelstiltskin is embarrassed and/or self-conscious by the weight he’s put on recently. Belle loves it and does her best to show that, while working through the emotional issues it brings.----------------------------------------
If she really wanted to be honest, his recent preoccupation was mostly her fault anyway – or perhaps not hers. Lacey’s.
As Lacey she’d made disparaging comments, the gross exaggerations fired from her lips meant to wound for no better reason than that she liked to push his buttons. The larger, the redder, the more pain they looked to produce, the better. Lying awake at night, even weeks later, Belle remembered them like a bad dream.
Looking a little flabby there, Gold. I’d try the salad, if I were you. Another hamburger, really? The blubber on your arms could already feed a small country as it is. Let’s get a table this time. I’m not sure how much longer your gut will fit in the booth.
And those were only the ones she could remember.
Besides that, she would recall with a shudder, they didn’t even take into account the sneers and laughter, the cruel mocking glare whenever he tried to protest the unfair comments. It relieved her to think that they’d never made love like that, too busy with reunions and family drama, because she couldn’t even begin to imagine the destruction she might have wrought. The damage done during those few dates was enough, damage that after a while he’d stopped refuting and started resignedly ignoring.
When her true memories had finally clicked into place, no words could sum up the depth of her regret. Nights were spent reassuring and apologizing, holding him close on the couch, safe in her – not Lacey’s – arms. Rum had blessed her with forgiveness and Belle was sure he meant it. She just wasn’t sure he forgave himself, and as the weeks passed, it became clear that her comments had stuck.
And perhaps to make matters worse, he was even heavier now.
It really wasn’t all that surprising. The tumultuous affairs of Storybrooke brought nothing if not stress, a state that ultimately, she knew from the biochemistry book she’d picked up one day, increased cortisol, which in turn did a number on the waistline. And it was true; his middle was taking the brunt of the weight, no matter how much he tried to hide it with a waistcoat. The fine fabric tended to ride up to expose the roll peeking out from above his trousers, the beginning of what might one day be generous lovehandles testing the sides of his waistband when he sat down. Everything was broader, sturdier as she might say, but she knew those weren’t the words that repeated ad nauseum and flayed him alive in his mind. The lack of sleep and constant barrage of problems weren’t helping, and well, men his age were known to pudge up a bit. It was the elephant in the room with him, and Belle was willing to bet her favorite book (a tie between Paradise Lost and The Princess and the Spinner, if one was wondering) that that was a big part of it. No matter her protestations to the contrary, Rum already saw himself as old, his ankle constantly putting him on the border of decrepit in his mind when nothing could be farther from the truth.
All in all, it was only fifteen pounds, twenty at most, but to him it meant slowing, aging, and worst of all, slipping ever farther from the standard of perfection he thought she deserved.
He’d been incredibly prickly about it as of late, snapping at her when she asked innocently if he wanted seconds at dinner or if she might help out by replacing the belt he’d said he lost. It hadn’t taken much thought to see the problem, especially after she found said belt wedged deep in the garbage one night, hidden with a sense of shame that had tears springing to her eyes.
Days were spent wracking her brain for some way to respectfully and appreciatively broach the issue they were both dancing around, but no good option presented itself. No matter how she tried to show him, Rum’s acceptance that she wanted to be with him was tenuous at best, and so easily upset on the best of days with less potent weapons than a comment about his weight.
The most obvious option would be to show him physically, not verbally, but the man who had taken to wearing shame and unworthiness like a second skin had functionally closed off that method too.
After nearly a month of the same script every time they made love, Belle could almost cry.
They’d make their way to the bedroom, and no matter how light the mood not ten minutes before, unease would slowly etch itself into the lines of his face with every step. Once in, door closed, their lips would meet, hers direct and insistent, his distracted, with pressure too light as if waiting for the moment they needed to flee. That moment would come the minute her fingers reached for his jacket, or if he wasn’t wearing one, began to undo the buttons of his shirt. He’d duck his head with a mumbled apology, limping for the light and plunging the room, and her hopes with it, into darkness. The irony was not lost on her that when they’d first started making love it had been she turning the lights off, ingrained modesty and years of upbringing forcing her hand. Returning to that life before bravery opened her eyes, returning to relying solely on hearing and touch, and barely the latter at that, had never been so disappointing.
And it wasn’t as if having the light off meant everything returned to normal. Oh no.
Undressing was mechanical, and unfortunately an individual affair. Once she was bare and in place on the bed, he’d shimmy down between her legs, conveniently drawing back just outside of reach. Thought was difficult with his mouth, hot and oh so wet, on her pussy and his fingers making tight, insistent swirls against her upper wall, but after she came and he’d calmed her through it, disappointment would spring from the quiet entreaties that followed – please turn over, love, raise your hips, darling may I, oh god sweetheart you feel so…
He was always behind her now, making as little contact as possible and depriving her of any opportunity to return the favor of the roaming, squeezing, maddening touch that could work such miracles. Rum would knead her thighs and ass, her breasts (their favorite place, and such a cruel thing to waste) impossible unless he draped himself across her, as she hoped every night he might. Any plea for him to do so or vain attempt to coax him against her was met with a stuttering “Belle, I-I can’t, I’m sorry,” and likely as not would remind him anew of every way he felt he could not please her, and have him softening inside her before two minutes had passed. That was a dangerous spiral of performance anxiety she didn’t want to come within miles of ever again.
So her breasts went untouched, though her own hands were pitiful in the shadow of the memory of his. Belle could hear his throaty moans, the hoarseness in his voice as he begged her, thanked her, but her hands were kept flat on the bed. The only cool silk they were allowed to feel was that of the sheets, not the skin she missed so desperately.
When he wasn’t behind her, he had her on top, holding her cleanly and surely away from everything he was trying to hide. In the dark it was detached, lacking the touch that communicated so much. He’d catch her questing fingertips and bring them back to his shoulders or hips with a regretful kiss to the pad of her thumb, the only apology she’d ever get.
Riding him, alone and floating in the darkness, Belle considered everything she missed. He wouldn’t lie on top of her or next to her, probably too afraid of letting her feel the stomach that had since grown into a belly, one that had overtaxed some of his smaller trousers (tossed uncharacteristically messily into the back of the closet, she’d noticed, larger sizes resignedly taking their place). Being pulled flush against him, feeling his weight distributed from her thighs to shoulders, the tight closeness of wrapping her arms under his to play across his back; all were sensations that were lost, their memory poor comfort. It was an ache, sitting just under her breastbone, the mourning of something that was still so very much alive if only he would make it so. She longed to suckle his nipples again, knowing how sensitive they were, feeling him writhe and moan under her relentless tongue. Touching his chest was out of the question now when he had his way, as if somehow the slightly fuller flesh of his pectorals would negate everything she felt.
It was for this reason she cherished the few times he’d been too distracted to catch her hands. She’d brought them down his thicker sides and to his belly, delighted by the softness of the flesh there and how much more of it there was. She wanted to kiss and lick from his nipples to his middle, pressing her nose and fingers to each wonderful inch and feeling it yield. The smattering of hair near his belly button would tickle her chin, and she’d lick all around his deepening navel, nibbling and sucking dark red signatures onto the pale canvas of his skin. She’d lower her lips to his cock and grip his thighs, meatier than the twigs he’d had before, seeing the curve of his belly rising in front of her. Her tongue would flit and flutter and lick and still she’d suck, hollowing her cheeks and feeling him giving in, happy and content and self-confident and sure that she loved and wanted him no matter what.
Belle came violently at the image, shuddering and grinding down onto him, bringing forth cries and hasty pleas of “oh fuck yes sweetheart, yes” from the man beneath her. Hanging almost limp, his cock still twitching and warm within her, she couldn’t say she knew where those desires had come from, but she was beyond happy they’d made themselves known.
After that night, she became even more aware of it, all of it, and of her increasing desire to leave no doubt in his mind that she appreciated every inch. She’d never given much thought to her body preferences before, and even now she couldn’t tell what had always been there and what was just the usual bottomless lust her husband inspired. Not only did the images fail to shock, but she eagerly returned to them again and again, elaborating and thinking of new scenarios to send her hurtling towards completion whenever they came together.
She wanted Rum to sit nearly in her lap, so she could encircle him from behind and lay her hands on his belly, feel the heft and weight of it, pressing her breasts into his back and sucking eagerly on his neck. From what she could discern through his clothes and from many hugs, it wouldn’t be hard, a potbelly perhaps but not like that of a drunk. No her certainly approving fingers had felt it to be flatter, fleshier, more inclined to rolls than to stick out, though it certainly did that some too. One hand would rub and squeeze – and here the sudden rush of heat had her squeezing around his cock, leaving him breathless and gasping and begging her to fall with him – and the other would crawl to his nipples, plucking and rolling the little buds until his cock leaked against the very body he so hated. Then and only then would she take him in one hand, pumping tight and excruciatingly slow as she revealed how much she wanted him, would always want him. If he wanted to take her after that, it would be with the lights on, once she’d crawled to straddle his lap, face to face and everything revealed and touching between them.
Belle wanted him to enjoy his body, not just enjoy himself in spite of it. She wanted him to enjoy it as much as she did.
The thought never failed to make her come.