Paris When it Sizzles
Summary: Stella and Hank get off to a bad start on a weekend trip to Paris. This is a full story that covers several Hank/Stella drabble requests, but I’m not going to tell you which ones.
Special thanks to @a-january-girl for fixing my French and going over all the little nuances to get the proper tone. Also, her handwriting is really good, y’all!
Their weekend getaway had not started on a good foot. Really, they had been fighting all week. A series of little spats that finally gave way to a real argument the night before they left for Paris. Needless to say, the train ride was uncomfortably silent.
In almost two years of living together, they’d had moments of getting on each others’ nerves. Stella, who had always lived alone, found it quite difficult, at first, to find someone in the same space every time she turned around. It was unfathomable to look at two toothbrushes in the holder at the sink or find strange things in the cupboards that she would never eat. Little things like finding his underwear on the floor in the morning or spots of shaving cream in the sink or his scraps of paper with fragmented sentences lying about the house had aggravated her more than she’d originally let on.
Hank, on the other hand, found it harder to integrate himself into London than he did integrating himself with Stella. The city bothered him more than she did, but sometimes it manifested itself into being annoyed with her. If it was too cold during the day, he might pout about how she refused to put the thermostat past 18 celsius, making sure to be very condescending about about his use of celsius as though learning the conversion from fahrenheit earned him superiority.
They had been able to work their way past these small things. Stella grew accustomed to his toiletries crowding hers in the medicine cabinet and Hank found a quiet, cozy pub to spend rainy days writing in, making friends with a few locals that he went out with on occasion.
The one hurdle they’d never truly gotten over was their different views on acceptable displays of affection in public. Stella was against them entirely, Hank was entirely for them. They’d never found it possible to even meet in the middle. Hank had to keep a lot of restraint most of the time and Stella had to try not to tense up so much when he put his arm around her when they went for a walk.
The spat that had caused the ripple effect through the rest of the week happened at Sunday brunch when Hank tried to take Stella’s hand while they were waiting for their table and she pulled it away from him. He’d looked at her with an expression she’d never seen before, but that she’d read as ‘hold my hand, bitch,’ and folded her arms across her chest instead. Brunch was very quiet.