eiffel tower poster

The Upper Hand: Jefferson x Reader {Part 3}

Part 1 | Part 2

Hamilton - Modern AU (Law School) 

Jefferson x Reader

2404 words

Hey, guys! I just wanted to say wow I can’t believe people are actually reading this and, even more shocking, you actually like it! I’m having a blast writing this and the feedback I’ve been getting is super awesome. I hope you enjoy part 3!

Originally posted by yummyfoooooood

With a groan Thomas throws the pen on his desk and rubs his eyes, cursing Y/N and her ambitious, overworking, 110% effort personality. The pressure she is putting on him combined with his other classload is starting to get to him. The two had had a total of four meetings after that first one, and each time she reminded him how much this project was worth and the amount of effort he needed to put into it (he can recite her inspiring (in her opinion) speech with her at this point). Doesn’t she know that he already puts a lot of pressure on himself in his studies? He didn’t become the second-ranked student in their class of 500 by smoking joints and partying all weekend or playing hacky sack or whatever she thinks he does in his spare time.

Her accidental admission of her class ranking had surprised him. He always assumed that she was average, maybe slightly above, that Hammy or one of the other HamilDorks helped her with her homework. Perhaps Thomas could find it in him to respect her enough to accept her suggestions and opinions about their project. She had definitely shown him that she was worth her salt by correcting his misinterpretation of a statute and quoting several laws and precedented cases from memory, which all helped strengthen their defense. One of the HamilDorks is actually useful—surprise!

He groans again just as James walks past his open door. His best friend/roommate lets out a chuckle and leans against the doorframe.

“Having problems?”

Thomas throws another pen against the wall over his desk, disappointed that it didn’t puncture a hole in the wall. “Yup.”

“Let me guess,” James says. “The little milkmaid from Kansas made another schedule for your case?”

For some odd reason, James’ condescending tone creates a little tickle of irritation in Thomas’ chest. His mind conjures an image of Y/N pulling her hair into a ponytail as she leans over her notes, her teeth working her rose-colored bottom lip as she concentrates. “She’s from Nebraska, James.”

“Does it matter?” he scoffs. “I think she needs to pull that stick out of her ass and relax. You’re top in the class. You’ll get it done no problem.”

Thomas clenches his fist and struggles to keep his voice even. “Perhaps you should focus on starting your own project, James. You know Hercules Mulligan isn’t going to be much help.”

He doesn’t see James furrow his eyebrows in thought, wondering why he is suddenly defending Y/N instead of joining in on making fun of her.

“You’re right,” James mutters after a pregnant pause. “Aren’t you supposed to be meeting with her tonight?”

In a panic, Thomas checks his watch, realizing that he’s lost track of time. It’s already eight. “Oh, shit!” he yells, hurriedly gathering his case papers and defense notes and shoving them into his bag. James thoughtfully observes Thomas as he quickly grabs a jacket and pulls on his shoes. His friend pauses in front of the mirror, runs a hand over his shortly cropped beard, and swats at a few rogue curls.

Thomas pushes past his roommate and jogs to the door, pulling it open hurriedly when his phone rings. He answers it, standing in the doorway to their two-bedroom apartment. His eyebrows meet in a frown as he listens to the person on the other end.

“What? The library is closed? Why? … Water pipe maintenance? Sounds like a bunch of—sorry… Uh, I don’t know where else to go. A lot of the local restaurants close at nine, so that would only give us an hour of work… Yeah, I know we need to keep on schedule.”

James appears in Thomas’ peripheral vision and clears his throat to grab Thomas’ attention. “I’m going to Aaron Burr’s for the evening to study for the Theories of Civil Law exam tomorrow,” he announces.

Thomas nods, his face brightening just enough for James to notice. “Okay, how about we work at my place? Madison is gone for the evening so he won’t distract us… Perfect! Let me give you the address…”




“This is where you live?” you ask, following Jefferson into the living room. “This is so…normal.”  

He laughs and motions for you to sit on either of the mismatched  couches (one dark brown leather, the other a god-awful blue and green plaid—you choose the leather). On the light wood coffee table are pens, pencils, and highlighters, along with a variety of sweating unopened root beer and orange soda cans. The perpendicular couches face a large flat screen TV mounted on the wall. Under the TV is a long thin table with what looks like an XBOX, a Wii, and two ugly red and black striped vases.

“What did you expect?” he asks, smirking. “Designer décor? An open floor plan with hardwood floors? A bear skin rug? A roaring fireplace and a wet bar? Four-car garage?”

You shrug. “I dunno. I heard you lived in France for a couple of years, so maybe baguettes and wine? Miniature Eiffel Tower sculptures?”

“Actually, these—” he gestures to the two red and black vases under the TV— “did come from France. What do you think?” he asks excitedly.

Should you tell him your real opinion or lie through your teeth? He looks so innocently happy, like a kid who made a picture frame made of macaroni noodles for their parent. You can’t squash on that kind of pure, unadulterated pride.

“They’re very nice,” you say politely.

“You hate them.” He shrugs. “You’re from Nebraska. What do you know about taste?”

Instead of yelling at him for insulting you and your home state like you would have a week ago, you laugh. Your amiability shocks both of you, and your laughter quickly dies on your lips. Awkward silence. He shoves one hand into his jeans pockets and rubs the back of his neck with the other. You smooth your skirt and lick your lips, looking anywhere but at him or his red French vases.

“So…” Jefferson finally breaks the silence. “I think we have everything we need here. Help yourself to a soda. Unless you want something else to drink?”

You shake your head. “Oh, no thanks. This is fine.”

“Okay. Let’s get to work.” He takes a seat on the other couch and spreads out his defense notes.

The two of you alternately bounce ideas off each other and work in silence for the next hour. You discovered that sitting on the carpeted floor and using the coffee table as a desk is more comfortable than leaning over it while sitting on the couch around the twenty minute mark. He realized that chugging two root beers and one orange soda leads to a lot of bathroom breaks halfway through the orange soda. You both found out that listening to a classical study mix on Pandora through his TV increased productivity after he yelled at you for humming an obnoxious popular hip-hop song you’d listened to on the way over.

“Do you have any more pieces of paper?” you ask after an hour of note-taking and paging through your textbooks.

He looks over the table as if he expects it to be there, frowning when he doesn’t see any. “I thought I brought some out…”

“All I see are pens and highlighters here.”

“I have some paper in my room.” He pulls his long legs out from under the coffee table and stands, groaning as he stretches his muscles. “Ahhh, man, you should really get up and stretch. We’ve been sitting too long.”

He disappears down the hall toward his and Madison’s rooms as you push yourself to your feet, echoing his groans. You start walking, slowly, across the living room floor, stepping over books and your backpack and your shoes, when you hear a crash and Jefferson’s strangled yelp. It sounded like a rainstorm.

Curious and concerned, you follow the sound of his cursing down the hall and into the bedroom on the left. You clap a hand over your mouth as you try to stop the laughter at the scene in his room. Jefferson glares at you, lying prostrate on the floor, partially buried under an avalanche of hundreds of boxes of mac ‘n’ cheese. His closet door reveals another hundred identical boxes stacked on high shelves.

“What on earth…” You shake your head, your shoulders shaking as you try to hold in your laughter. “I have so many questions.”

He curses again and sits up, pushing macaroni boxes off of him. “I can’t believe my precious betrayed me..” he murmurs breathlessly.

“Okay, first question. Why do you have so much boxed mac ‘n’ cheese? This is really unhealthy.”

“Um, excuse you?” Jefferson leaps to his feet, indignant, and begins pacing back and forth in front of you. He reminds you of Washington when he gets really passionate during a lecture.

“Macaroni and cheese is the food of the gods. This is the perfect food for any occasion—birthday, Christmas, christenings, job interviews, bad days, good days, you name it! It should be everyone’s comfort food. It’s cheesy goodness with soft pasta, carbs and dairy, so it’s totally healthy. It’s easy to make—takes less than fifteen minutes. Plus, I memorized the directions so I don’t even have to look at the box. Are you impressed yet?”

“You are insane.” You look over the boxes in disbelief. “How much did this all cost?”

“I buy it in bulk, so less than you think.” His smile widens as he nods eagerly.

“Why was it in your closet?”

“Not enough room in the kitchen cupboards. Madison hates it anyway, so he told me to keep it out of his sight. I have another box of boxes under my bed, too.”

You suddenly realize that you are standing in his bedroom. You take in the décor, the grey-and-white-striped comforter on the bed, the magenta throw pillow, the Eiffel Tower poster hung over his side table, the bookshelf full of books (lots about France and one curiously titled The Miracle of Macaroni and Cheese: Variations of the Best Comfort Food), the desk in the corner strewn with textbooks, papers, and writing utensils. Above his desk handwritten notes, printed quotes, and pictures have been taped or tacked to the wall.

“That’s my Wall of Inspiration,” he says, and you realize he’s been watching you as you look around his room. You take a step closer and read quotes about success and hard work from Gandhi, Martin Luther King, Jr., and Steve Jobs before finding one printed on magenta paper in a large, fancy script:  

Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal; nothing on earth can help the man with the wrong mental attitude.

That’s really true, you think, wondering who wrote it. You read the author’s name in smaller print under the quote:

–Thomas Jefferson

“Ha! You quoted yourself on your Wall of Inspiration? That’s a lot of ego, Jefferson.”

He shrugs nonchalantly. “I am big enough to admit that I am often inspired by myself.”

You shake your head at him reproachfully but you can’t knock the satisfied smirk off his face. His inflated sense of self makes you want to slap him but you also kind of admire him for it. He believes in himself and his abilities. He is comfortable in his own skin and doesn’t care about what other people think about him, which is evident by the magenta T-shirt with the words Qu’est-ce que j’ai raté? You find yourself secretly wishing that you had half the confidence he had.

Beside his quote on the Wall of Inspiration is a picture of Jefferson and a pretty girl with long curly hair and sunkissed skin. She is smiling at the camera, her nose crinkling cutely as Jefferson kisses her cheek. His girlfriend, you realize. You feel the smile on your face fade.

“That’s a cute picture,” you say, trying to act normal. “Who is she?”

His eyebrows move closer together as he follows your finger to the picture. “Oh, that’s Martha,” he says tersely, as if that answers your question. Technically it does, but it also produces more questions. Is she his girlfriend? Are they broken up? Why is she still on the wall? Is she around? Why haven’t you seen her around?

Wait, it’s none of your business, why do you care? It’s not like you like Jefferson. He’s an insufferable, overconfident jerk who wears too much magenta and has insulted you too many times for you to ever like him as anything more than a classmate. That’s what you two are—classmates and partners on a school project. That’s it. There’s no way you could ever be attracted to him.

Almost as though he had heard your inner monologue, Jefferson bends down to begin picking up the boxes of mac ‘n’ cheese strewn across his floor. His jeans tighten around his ass, giving you a front-row view of how round and—for lack of a better word—perfect it is. You can see the muscles in his back as his magenta shirt stretches with his reach. How had you never noticed how fit he was? It was as if someone had given you glasses that suddenly cleared up your vision so you could notice small details that you hadn’t before. Like the swell of his biceps as he lifts a big cardboard box full of boxes of mac ‘n’ cheese back onto the top shelf of his closet. You’ve always been an arm girl, you admit to yourself as you admire his toned muscles.

He glances over his shoulder at you and smirks as if he can read your thoughts. You shake your head hard, clearing your mind.

“We should probably get back to work,” Jefferson says, holding out a blank yellow legal pad.

You nod dumbly and take the pad from him, cursing your face as it betrays you with a deep blush. The blood makes your face hot and pounds in your ears as you follow him back to the living room. You fan yourself with the pad when he isn’t looking. Now you can’t help but watch his muscles as he sits back down, his back against the plaid couch and his legs stretched out in front of him.

Shit, you think. This can’t be good.