To One Thing Constant
Beauty and the Beast College AU Chapter 1/?
Based on the prompt ‘Imagine one half of your OTP reciting Romeo and Juliet under the other person’s window’
Basically, Adam and Belle catch feelings and everyone just tries to deal with the gratuitous Shakespeare references.
Also on AO3 (x) (For my Klaroline shippers, there is also a fic based on this same prompt coming for that pairing)
“Surely you’re not intending to put the Adventure novels
next to Geography and Travel?”
That does it.
Belle slammed the books she’d been carrying down onto the Library’s reading tables a tad louder than intended but if it has the desired effect she can’t find it in herself to regret it. Stalking across the floor, ignoring Mrs. Potts softly calling her name, Belle comes to a halt in front of her co-worker. Placing her hands on her hips, Belle glares at Adam who meets her murderous gaze with a coolly raised eyebrow over the rim of his Starbucks cup. When Belle had heard that the motherly Mrs. Potts was looking for someone to help re-organise the Campus Library she’d jumped at the chance to turn her favourite hobby into paid employment. What she hadn’t been counting on was the fact that would mean sharing a job with Adam Vendome, another student on her English Literature course and the bane of her existence.
Exceptionally attractive, rich and intelligent (as well as widely rumoured to be distantly related to the Kings of France) Adam is also exceptionally rude and obnoxious.
Whenever and whatever they debate in class Adam’s always needling her to justify her arguments and never seems to be satisfied with her answers, always asking for greater reasoning. He’d groaned loudly when she’d praised Romeo and Juliet during the class reading and the argument had continued all the way from the classroom to the Library to begin their shifts.
“It’s my favourite!”
“Ugh. Why is that not a surprise?”
“Well, all that pining and heartache,” he’d shuddered, face screwing up in disgust which Belle would’ve thought under any other circumstances was rather cute if he hadn’t been dragging her favourite play through the mud. “There’s so many other things to read”
“Like what?” she’d shot back, waiting to hear what author or work he thought could rival the Bard.
“I’m sure there’s something in here you could start with” he’d replied, holding the library door open for her and jerking his head in the direction of the books that awaited them. Belle had been brought up short, thrown by his cleverly broad answer and thoughtless chivalry, even when he was picking on her. None of the boys back home in Villeneuve acted like that.
The fact that they had mutual friends in Lumiere and Plumette made things even more awkward because then she had to deal with the piercing gaze of his blue eyes in the pub after class or the café where Plumette works as well as the Library stacks. If the eyes really are the windows to the soul, then Belle doesn’t know what to make of Adam. He has everything he could ever want; money, books, a house of his own off campus but sometimes she’ll catch sight of him and she can’t help but think that he looks like a man in torment.
Furthermore, he refuses to come to an agreement with her on the re-arrangement of the Library, sometimes due to being in different seminar groups for Cogsworth’s French history class, they’re not always on shift at the same time. As a result, she’s come into the stacks more than once to find him tutting to himself, arms laden with books he’s decided work better elsewhere. They have what is now a long standing feud over the Romances which Adam keeps trying to install in the back of the stacks with the Reference section no-one visits except on a blue moon. His piss-poor excuse is that it makes sense alphabetically.
And he has the nerve to criticise her organisational skills.
Paired with crazy hours, extensive word counts, looming deadlines and a best friend with a very active sex life Belle’s not sure she can take much more of this. And now he’s, what supervising her on his time off?! This last offence was the one that broke the Camel’s back as the saying goes because Belle isn’t the one who literally strolls into class five minutes late with Starbucks every day.
“Why not?” she demands, irritated at his fifth comment on her work ethic in as many minutes.
Adam looks genuinely surprised at the question, answering with his trademark tactlessness “Well, because they’re fiction.”
Belle takes a deep breath out through her nose, swallowing the urge to shout. She had never thought that someone as passionate about books as she was could annoy the living shit out of her but that was before she’d met Adam. She needs this job to help ease the struggle of university finances and as warm and wonderful as Mrs Potts is, she knows that the older woman would take none too kindly to a shouting match in the library.
A myriad of responses spring to mind but Belle dismisses them all. That she was perfectly aware of that thank you very much Captain Obvious, that she’d only been taking the books off the shelves and had been about to ask his opinion before he had questioned her judgement so condescendingly, that Adam’s technically not even on shift at the minute and surely he has better things to do than bother her. She had though that putting Adventure books next to those containing more detailed information about the real life locations the great events took place in seemed like a perfectly reasonable notion to her, but she’d been about to ask his opinion. Instead, Belle just let out a loud growl of frustration before turning on her heel and leaving the Library as if wolves were at her heels.
Adam stared wordlessly after her before turning to look at Mrs. Potts in disbelief. Mrs. Potts in her charming measured way, put down her teacup, shaking her head gently. “That didn’t go very well at all now did it?”