[or: Jason asks Kim out and Trini is too good a friend for this crap]
Jason asks Kim out on a Thursday.
Trini’s not sure why it’s important that it’s a Thursday, only that it is. Thursdays suck. Not quite the week, not quite the weekend. She supposes, also–along those same lines–that she’s not even really sure why it’s important at all . Because it isn’t.
Jason can ask out whoever he wants. He could ask out Alpha-5 for all Trini cares. And it’s not like she has a monopoly on Kim’s time anyway, even if they usually do spend their Friday nights babysitting Trini’s brothers together. Even if her going on a date with Jason would take that away from her.
That tiny shred of a regular schedule.
They’re in the pit when it happens and Trini is delicately putting a bandage over a particularly bad scrape on Kim’s shoulder. She’s being a good friend. Because that’s what friends do. Friends press antiseptic wipes into cuts and wipe away blood and sometimes even press their fingers to their lips and then press those fingers into the Mickey Mouse band-aid. It’s not weird.
It’s completely normal.
“How bad is it?” Kim is asking, her voice that soft timbre that definitely doesn’t make Trini’s knees shake a little from where she’s kneeling on them.
That would be crazy.
“You’re fine, you big baby,” she jokes, trying to get rid of some of the tension of the moment–that unnecessary weight that is always added so immediately whenever her and Kim’s skin meets.
Kim laughs, this light sound that hardly even sounds like her.
It’s a nice moment–Kim sitting on a rock, Trini kneeling beside her, fingers keen and careful as she presses the adhesive sides of the band-aid down. And then Jason comes shuffling over with his hands wringing out some gross sweat towel like he’s nervous and his eyes are downcast, which is definitely weird because–
Well, because he’s Jason. He exudes confidence and this boyish, who-fucking-cares swagger most days that she’s slightly envious of, if only because he can get away with it, as a boy, without being called a bitch .
But she digresses.
“Hey, Kimberly, can I, um…talk to you for a second?”
It’s not an unusual request, if only because he’s been known to pull each of them aside for the occasional heart-to-heart just to ensure that they’re all on the same side. Usually, they are.
This is not one of those times.
From the side of Kim’s face Trini is on, she can see her eyebrows lower down in confusion. She can see that biting frown twisting on her lips, and Trini, in turn, frowns in mere response.
“Yeah, sure,” Kim says. “What’s up?”
The moment Trini realizes it’s weird is the moment Jason glances at her, as though waiting for her to duck out or excuse herself, which–
She doesn’t have to, okay? Kim is probably the only female friend she’s ever had. She has a right to bear witness.
Make sure Jason doesn’t say anything stupid.
Like, You really sucked at training today.
Or, Those jeans don’t look great on you.
“I was, um…sort of wondering if you maybe wanted to go on a date tomorrow…with me.”
Yeah, something like that.
Kim is silent for a really long time, her mouth just sort of hanging open as she weighs her options, no doubt. Trini knows the feeling. And it’s weird that Jason would even ask, but it’s not necessarily surprising.
It’s practically set in stone. Two kids, fallen from grace, who used to run in the same social circles. If things were different and Jason hadn’t gotten almost expelled for that cow prank and Kim hadn’t nearly been taken to court over the Amanda thing, they probably would have ended up here either way.
Still, there’s the group dynamic to think of and Trini is half-expecting Kim to just blurt out the word, No, and then hightail it out of there, leaving Trini to slink out awkwardly from underneath Jason’s heavy, disappointed gaze.
There’s the group dynamic and the fact that this could sincerely screw that up.
Trini imagines all of this going through Kim’s head and more and then Kim says, “Um…” but instead of delivering some devastating blow to Jason’s ego, she says, “Sure.”
The word sends a pang through Trini’s head, the beginnings of a headache. She frowns, bites her lip and presses the band-aid too hard onto Kim’s shoulder, making her yelp out in pain.
“Jesus, Trin! Be careful.”
When she looks up, Jason is frowning at her. Perhaps over the fact that she’s just (accidentally) hurt Kim, but it doesn’t appear to be the look of someone who’s just asked out Kimberly Hart and gotten a positive response. Trini would be jumping for–
Because she’d never ask out Kim because she’s not that girl. She’s not the kind of girl who develops feelings for her straight best friend. Her first best friend.
Jason smiles. “Great. I…I’ll text you, okay?”
Kim bobs her head. “Yeah, great,” she says and then Jason leaves. He joins Zack and Billy by the ship and they leave together.
It’s quiet for a couple of minutes–just the sound of Trini breathing too harshly for someone who’s literally just kneeling there–and then Kim clears her throat.
“Are you okay?” she asks, like it’s supposed to mean something different. Something deeper.
Trini nods. “Yep. Fine.”
She pulls herself up and grabs her things and it isn’t until she’s soaking wet and running home that she realizes she just stormed off like a character from some stupid teen drama. She stormed off for no damn reason.
Because she doesn’t have a reason, she thinks as she sinks heavily, wet, onto her bed and feels the soak of the sheets beneath the seat of her jeans.
At least, not one she’s willing to consider.
It only gets worse.
Or, weirder, actually, because Trini has absolutely no opinion of Kim going on a date with Jason, so how could it possible get worse?
Answer: it can’t. It can’t get anything because Trini doesn’t care.
“Morning,” Jason greets from beside her locker as she approaches that next morning and she frowns at him. It’s too early for his perky smile, the way his blue eyes shift in the flourescent lights.
She grunts and tugs her locker open, shoves some of Kim’s books aside so she can get her things.
“Was your night okay?”
She has to hand it to him, he’s genuinely trying. He may not be the elected leader she would have voted for as President Power Ranger, but he tries to make sure they’re all on the same page. Even when he’s asking one of them out.
“If you’re looking for Kim, she doesn’t come get books till after third, so you can come back later.”
Jason frowns–this pretty thing that turns down his lips like some Teen Beat poster. “I wanted to talk to you, actually,” he says and Trini ignores him, grabs her books and slams the locker closed. “I have a favor to ask.”
She feels sluggish, weighted down like she’s just been pushed off a cliff and into an unexpected bed of water waiting below. “What kind of favor?”
And the sheepish look Jason gives her is answer enough.
Okay, so it shouldn’t piss her off. There’s no reason for it.
Teen comedies should have taught her that she should do anything for her best friend, even help the guy she’s dating date her. Especially that.
Of course, in a teen movie, she’d probably fall in love with Jason at the end and Kim wouldn’t be a very good person so the audience wouldn’t feel bad that she’s left all alone, but…
Yeah, no. That’s not gonna happen.
“You’re gonna what ?” Zack asks at lunch, halting mid-throw with a tater tot in his hand. The face he’s making is torn between amusement and sincere pity, so Trini looks away–squints until she can just barely see the pile of tater tots he’s been making in the football field down below the bleachers.
“You’re making a mess,” she admonishes, trying to change the subject, but Zack is never so easily swayed.
He frowns and drops his arm. “I’m sorry,” he starts, “but it sounded like you just said you’re helping Jason get ready for his date tonight.”
She looks away, finding something interesting to pick at on the knee of her jeans.
“His date with Kim.”
“The same Kim you’re in love with.”
“I’m not in love with Kim,” she snarls and Zack nearly looks afraid for a second before a smug look replaces it.
“Mhm,” he hums and looks away. He chucks the tater tot from before and it lands in the same pile in the middle of the fifty yard line.
He nods. “I heard you.”
“Yeah, but you don’t seem like you believe me.”
He chucks another one and then turns to meet her eyes. “That’s because I don’t.”
She doesn’t owe any sort of explanation to him anyway.
“So,” Kim starts at the end of the day, standing by Trini’s locker and Trini can’t even look at her, can’t bring herself to do it.
Keeps hearing, the Kim you’re in love with, over and over in her head. Zack’s stupid voice.
Stupid Zack, always making things more complicated.
“Yeah?” Trini prods, because it’s rude to ignore someone you’re not technically mad at. It’s rude to ignore your best friend at all.
“I, um…Have fun with your brothers tonight, I guess.”
That’s when Trini remembers that she’ll be babysitting alone for the first time since before Rita–since before meeting Kim. She’ll have to deal with Diego and Alex not wanting to do their homework on her own and Kim won’t be there after bedtime to watch cooking shows in the dark living room with.
Which is fine.
Because Trini isn’t needy. She doesn’t need to spend every single Friday with Kim like some standing date.
“Right,” she says and tugs the last of her books out. “Have fun on your date .”
If she spits that last word–if she slams their shared locker door a little too hard–she doesn’t mean to. And it doesn’t mean anything when she’s scared to look back at Kim as she leaves, scared to see her reaction.
At home, she tries to smother herself with a pillow only to be interrupted by a phone call.
“Hey,” Jason says when she answers. He sounds anxious and Trini closes her eyes against her growing migraine. “Could you…I don’t know what to wear. Could you maybe come over and help me?”
Like she’s some sort of dating-Kimberly-Hart expert. Like she’s a dating expert at all .
The clock on her phone says 3:47. The date isn’t until 7:00 .
Trini sighs. “Be there in five minutes.”
Jason answers the door like he’s just run a marathon. He looks sickly, his blue eyes darting around nervously as his hand clasps around her wrist and drags her inside and down the hall to his bedroom.
“Sorry,” he says, once the door is closed. “My mom knows I’m…” He trails off. “And if she sees you, she may think you’re who I’m taking to dinner.”
Trini nods. She gets it.
Mrs. Scott is almost as overbearing as her own mother–something that her and Jason had only just begun to bond over before this whole date fiasco started. Now, she’s–
Now she’s fine. Because this is fine.
Jason is her friend and Kim is her friend and this is totally fine .
“So…You’re taking Kim to dinner then?”
Her curiosity gets the best of her, bubbling up in her chest and her stomach and making her feel antsy. She taps her foot against his bedroom floor and takes a seat on his messy bed, pushing a couple of dirty t-shirts onto the floor to make room for herself.
Does curiosity always feel so nauseating?
Jason crosses his arms over his chest and looks towards his open closet, his messy dresser drawers, all of them pulled out and torn apart. “Yeah,” he says. “That, um…that pizza place over on Maple?”
She nods. Her brother ate seven slices of pepperoni there last month and upchucked on checkered table cloth. Good times.
Of course, she doesn’t tell Jason that because he looks nervous enough already without hearing about her kid brother puking everywhere in the same restaurant where he’s about to take Kimberly Hart on a date.
“You good?” she asks. “You look sick.”
And he does.
Jason nods and uncrosses his arms to wipe his palms on his jeans. “Yeah, I’m good, I’m just…”
But even he doesn’t seem to know what he really is, and the subject is promptly dropped.
She pulls herself to her feet and edges around him to his closet and pushes around at a couple of flannels he has hung up inside it. “What were you thinking, clothes-wise?” she asks, because all the shirts look pretty much the same, most of them checkered blue and red.
Jason shrugs and he doesn’t seem to know what he’s allowed to do with his hands, because he keeps moving them around–stuffing them in his pockets, running his fingers through his hair, rubbing his face with his palms.
“Dude, are you sure you’re okay?” she asks. “Because, like…You look like you’re gonna ralph”
“I just…” He looks away and then crosses the room to sit in her recently vacated spot on his bed. “I just don’t know what I’m supposed to do or say tonight. I just feel like…This should be easy, right? If it’s meant to be?“
Trini knows that feeling–feels it pretty much every time she’s left alone with Kim, but it had been the most poignant that first afternoon alone, before they’d defeated Rita. She’d made a fool of herself going out for coffee with the other girl–hadn’t known whether she should hold the door open for her and ended up slamming it shut on Kim’s face. She hadn’t known whether or not she’d been meant to pay for her own half or not and ended up accidentally making Kim pay for the whole thing and then–
It hadn’t been pretty, but she’d like to think it’s gotten simpler since then.
Still not perfect by any means, but definitely not the disaster of that first afternoon.
“Hey, Kim is easy, okay?” Trini says, but it’s a lie and it comes out sounding like some sort of comment about something else entirely. She blushes and Jason gives her an odd look at her phrasing. “What I mean is–” She starts, clearing her throat. “–is that she’s not gonna, like, judge you or anything. She has like endless chances for us weirdos.”
Jason smiles in relief at her words. “Don’t lump me in with you,” he jokes and Trini smiles, the mood suddenly a good deal lighter than it had been mere moments before.
“Just open the door for her. Hold her chair out. Ask her questions, I guess. She doesn’t like to talk about herself unless you make her, but it makes her feel better to do it, so…And she might try to steal your food, but just let her because she makes this really cute face when she thinks she’s gotten away with it.”
Jason is looking at her weird again, his eyes narrowed and Trini looks away, back at his closet.
“How about this one?” she asks, pulling out a button-down shirt that looks exactly like the others.
But Jason seems pleased. He smiles and takes it and makes Trini turn around as he changes.
It isn’t until 6:00 when she’s making sure his hair looks decent that Trini realizes what she’s helping him prepare for.
“Thanks,” he says on his way out, his keys jingling faintly in his hand as he makes his way to his recently-repaired truck.
Trini nods and swallows around the lump in her throat, wonders vaguely if she might be getting sick. Other than the faint, persistent nausea, though, she feels completely fine.
“Have fun on your date,” she says and the words sound wrong coming out of her mouth, leave her tongue feeling heavy.
Jason nods and smiles as he backs down the driveway.
Trini almost follows him. She even starts to–heading down those familiar back roads to Kim’s house–but she stops herself before she gets too far and pulls over on the side of the road.
“What the fuck is happening?” she whispers, head against the steering wheel.
Jason’s tail lights disappear up ahead and it’s only once they’ve completely disappeared that Trini turns around and drives herself home.
Her parents leave at eight for their weekly scheduled date night and her brothers’ long division homework does little to distract her. Trini feels sick–like she’s trapped in some sort of funhouse mirror, stretching and pulling and shrinking again until her insides are a jumbled, sick mess.
Zack texts her once around nine with a stupid meme she doesn’t fully understand and Billy sends a picture of his cat about twenty minutes later with a message that just says, You feel off. Maxwell wanted to say hi. Call me if you need me! :)
The offer’s nice and all, but all it does is remind her of why she feels off. And why she doesn’t want to think about why she feels off.
Twenty minutes after she puts the boys to bed–when she’s flopped back on the couch trying to take some sort of enjoyment in the way Gordon Ramsay is yelling on screen–the doorbell rings.
She contemplates just leaving it. Her dad forgets his keys sometimes and hates pulling out the hide-a-key rock they have by the front stoop because “the neighbors might catch on”, but being forced to out his secret is punishment enough for forgetting them again .
But then it rings again. More insistently. Loud enough to wake Diego and Alex.
She pulls herself to her feet and grumbles all the way to the front door, unlocking it and ripping it open. “Mom, you gotta start making sure he grabs his keys before you guys–” she starts, and then promptly cuts herself off.
Jason is standing on her porch with the shirt she picked out for him tugged up around his elbows. He’s kicking at the wooden steps and shifting his weight and he says, “Hey,” when she sees that it’s him.
That damn lump in her throat is back. “What do you want?” she asks, meaning it to sound harsh, but comes out insecure and a little wobbly.
“I, um…” He shuffles just the tiniest bit closer and his posture very nearly has her pitying him.
“How’d it go?”
The question is out of her mouth before she can even stop herself. Jason’s head tilts up as her words hit him and she gets the answer from the way his eyes drop.
This time, it’s her that tugs him into the house.
They’ve got maybe twenty minutes before her parents get back. Thirty, at the most, but that’s only if her mom decided dessert was worth it for the night and she usually doesn’t, citing that “room for dessert” means you did not have enough to eat at dinner.
Trini rolls her eyes at the thought and realizes too late that Jason must think it’s directed at him.
Which, it is. But only a little.
She doesn’t want to talk about that.
“What went wrong?” she asks and Jason shrugs, tosses his hands up in the air.
“I don’t know!” he says. “It was just…it was weird. I thought maybe…”
He doesn’t have to finish. He’d thought that it wouldn’t be weird, that the stars would finally align because, based on every group dynamic ever made, Fred and Daphne always end up together.
But that metaphor pretty much sucks. Mostly because she’s pretty sure that makes her Scooby.
Jason is too big for her couch. He looks humongous and out of place, but he presses his face to his knees at an awkward angle, and she’s pitying him before she realizes why. Disgust twists in her chest a second later, because a tiny thrill of pride had shot through her when she’d realized the date hadn’t gone well, and what kind of friend does that make her?
“Wanna be specific or am I gonna have to prod the rest of it out of you?”
She pokes his ribs, making him squirm, and then he finally pulls himself upright.
“We didn’t have anything to talk about,” he tells her. “We just sat there for, like, twenty minutes in silence. It was weird! And…I tried to hold her hand on the way into the restaurant and she just…I don’t know.”
Trini’s not sure if that’s meant to convey that Kim had pulled away or that she’d been superbly and shockingly terrible at holding hands in the first place. She’d go with the latter, if only for the comedy of the thought, but she knows it’s not true.
Because she’s held Kim’s hand exactly three times–once after Kim had confessed everything that happened with Amanda two months ago; once on the couch just two weeks ago; and the other just earlier on in the week when they’d been patrolling through the streets for anything strange.
Kim’s hands are warm without being sweaty, soft without being clammy. Her grip isn’t too firm.
It’s not like Trini has held a hundred different hands in her life, but she’s pretty sure Kim’s would be at the top of her list even if she had .
“It just felt wrong,” Jason admits. “And then we talked and I just…I realized why . Or…I don’t know.”
Trini’s head spins. She has so many questions, she’s not sure where to even begin
“Maybe you went about it the wrong way,” Trini tries. She really wants to be supportive because Jason is her teammate and her friend and she wants Kim to be happy. And if Jason can make her happy, then she’s gonna damn well do her best to make sure he does . “She’s…Kim is sorta hard to pin down. It took me a while to get her, but she’s…I don’t know. You’ll get there.”
Jason is quiet for a long time, just kind of slumped over with his face pressed into his hand, his elbow braced on his thigh. Trini isn’t sure what she’s supposed to say and Gordon Ramsay is saying, “You’re a fucking lunatic!” on screen, so she watches him storm out of whatever restaurant he’s trying to fix and waits for the silence to be broken.
But the moment it is, she wishes it hadn’t been. Because Jason says, “You’re a good friend, Trini. You really care about her,” in this super insistent way she doesn’t know what to say to.
“I mean, she’s my friend, so I–” she starts, but Jason’s eyes really should be illegal.
They’re too blue, too easy to turn into watery messes that you can’t turn down.
She sighs. “Yeah, I do,” she says, and it’s at least enough to get him out of her house before her parents get home.
did you guys miss me?
The message comes through while Trini is lying in bed an hour or so later, just kinda staring up at the exposed wood of her ceiling, that messy dent she hasn’t quite gotten around to patching up yet.
Her phone blinds her eyes and she doesn’t know how to say no because the answer is yes.
The boys did, she sends back and it’s read immediately, making Trini’s heart flutter.
Somewhere across town, Kim is lying in bed with her phone open waiting for Trini to text her.
just the boys?
Trini sighs. Yep, she types, then, how was your date with our dear captain? even though she already knows the answer.
It goes unanswered, but read, for probably about two full minutes before Kim finally texts back.
fine, it says, and then, i gotta sleep. see you tomorrow.
Kim, it seems, isn’t anymore willing to talk about what happened, and Trini shouldn’t, but she’s relieved for a moment before the disgust sinks in.
She really is the worst.
I’ll help you, she texts Jason a minute or two later and the response she gets is immediate.
“You seem better,” Billy chirps happily when she swings into detention the next morning.
He’s already at his desk with some homework pulled out, hands folded neatly on his lap, and his smile is impossible to ignore.
“I’m fine, Billy,” she tells him. It’s not necessarily a lie, just a marginal bending of the truth.
He nods. “Okay. Well…Maxwell says hi.” He smirks at his own cleverness and Trini smiles.
“Cool,” she says. “Tell him I said hi back.”
And then she’s in her corner of the room, burying her face in her English homework and ignoring the way Kim’s look burns into her face when she climbs down the steps a minute or two later.
Jason comes slinking down just before Mr. Narvy and he throws a note at Trini’s head as soon as roll call is finished.
what’s the plan? it reads, in scratchy mostly illegible letters.
Trini sighs and glances at the back of his head and then across the room where Kim is sitting, her head lowered over her homework. She’s bouncing her leg like she sometimes does when she’s taking a test in Biology. It’s a movement that Trini has become more than a little familiar with since the beginning of the school year–since before they officially met–and it makes her smile a little distantly.
She scribbles down her plan as quickly as she can manage and chucks it at his head, then pulls out another piece of paper, writing out A wild Jason appears! at the top of it in as close to Jason’s handwriting as she can manage.
It hits the back of Jason’s head with a painful looking thump. He whips around to glare at her in confusion and she just mouths, “Throw it to Kim,” with a particular harsh jut of her head towards the girl in question.
So he throws it to Kim.
It lands on her desk and she immediately stops bouncing her leg, head twisting around to look at Trini, as if the note had come from her, which…it had . But she catches Jason smiling at her instead.
Trini watches the exchange out of the corner of her eye and then the note is being discreetly tossed her way by Jason a second later.
All it says is, hey .
Which, for Kim, is wildly solemn.
Jason is watching her and Trini’s heart is pounding in her ears. The fact that it’s not her own name she’s writing down doesn’t make her feel any better.
Jason uses ASK TO A MOVIE TONIGHT.
Her hands tremble as she waits, which is stupid of course because it’s not like she’s asking Kim out (even if she is ).
Kim is smiling. Trini can see that cute (what?) little curve of her lips from where she’s sitting. It must be a big smile.
She’s pretty sure she’s having a heart attack.
The answer she gets a minute later is, sounds good!
She should feel proud, maybe. Because she just asked out a pretty girl, because the pretty girl said yes, even though the way she went about it was possibly the dorkiest, quasi-lamest thing she could have done.
It’s not clear what expression she expects from Jason when she sends the note chain back to him with she likes dramas–bring tissues scribbled on the front, but mild disappointment certainly isn’t it.
At least training is cancelled.
A silver lining perhaps, but Kim flakes out after detention and Trini isn’t sure what she’s supposed to do now that she’s gotten Jason another date, so she goes to the mine anyway.
Zack is already there, swinging his legs over the edge of the cliff.
“You look pissed,” he says as she slumps down into the dirt beside him. “How’s the whole Cyrano de Bergerac thing working for you?”
She frowns, momentarily confused and Zack shrugs.
“What?” he asks. “I read.”
Jason calls her a couple of hours later, freaking out about movie times and choices.
“I don’t know, dude,” she says and resists the urge to chuck her phone into a rock.
Zack chuckles humorlessly from his spot on top of the train car. She flips him off.
“It’s like you’ve never dated a girl before,” she says, and it really is.
Not that she has either–not that she has much experience–but she’s been to the movies with Kim. She’s sat beside her in a mostly-dark room with one bucket of popcorn between them and felt the exact same nervousness that’s probably jumping in Jason’s throat right now.
Mostly, she just hates knowing that her and Jason have that much in common, so when he says, “You’re right. It’ll be fine,” a minute later, it’s satisfaction she feels when the line clicks dead.
He doesn’t show up on her doorstep that night, which she takes as a good sign.
Around ten, he texts her the thumbs up emoji. She doesn’t want to think about what that means.
“How are things with Jason?”
Trini asks it out of obligation, out of some masochistic tendency that she relies on like bad limp. She doesn’t want to know. Or, rather, 90% of her doesn’t want to know. It’s that rogue 10% that would much rather her be left a crying mess on the floor with her hard-to-process feelings.
Except they’re not so hard.
“Good,” Kim says and she’s cradling her paper coffee cup in her hands and exhaling bright, white curling air that spreads upwards, chilled and freezing microscopically.
Trini nods and presses her coffee further between her knees, bundling into her coat and trying to ignore the cold metal of the park bench beneath her legs.
It’s quiet. Trini lets the unspoken reasoning behind her brief, unimportant interrogation settle into the space between them, which doesn’t say much because there’s not much space. Kim’s arm is pressed up against her own and Trini wants to move and doesn’t in equal, confusing parts.
“Are you…” She’s not certain how she wants to ask that. Mostly because she’s only had a couple of days to come to terms with where this has been heading since she met Kim on that stupid cliff two months ago.
Her dumb, teenage heart got away from her and now she can’t so much as look at Kim without imagining Jason kissing her. The thought makes her sick. The thought of Kim with anyone (else) has made her sick for a while now, but she’s only just now begun to understand the reasoning behind it.
“Yeah?” Kim prods and she’s looking at her now.
Trini meets her eyes, but barely–refuses to get lost in the darkness of their color, that beautiful shadow around Kim’s pupils that spins her out of control every time.
Trini tries to hide the severity of the moment by taking a sip of her coffee, wincing at the bitterness, but relishing in its warmth. She’s not sure who’s idea it was to sit in the park in the middle of November, but she’s fairly certain that her nose is never going to be warm ever again.
“Are you going to go out again?” she asks, once the scalding coffee has slipped down her throat.
Kim looks away. “I don’t know,” she says. “Maybe. If he asks.”
And then Kim bumps Trini’s shoulder with her own. “The beanie actually makes more sense in the winter,” she jokes and the image of Jason pressing his hands into the graceful convex of Kim’s waist makes her swallow a little more thickly than usual.
Billy brings her some cookies that night, the kind you can find at every other grocery store. The somewhat chalky, sprinkled kind that mostly just taste like processed sugar and food dye.
It’s a nice thought and Trini eats three of them on the couch while Billy sits beside her and reads.
“Is this because Jason and Kimberly are dating now?” he asks and Trini doesn’t think there’s any point in answering because that’s all this has ever been about.
She likes Billy and his gentle voice, the way he’s always trying to perk everyone up, no matter what the circumstance. She especially likes how good he is at it.
“You should talk to Kimberly,” he says a little later and she’s got her head on his shoulder, feeling the way he moves as he chews one of those cookies. “Nothing else is gonna help.”
And of course he’s right. He’s Billy. And Billy is never wrong.
But the timing doesn’t seem right. She doubts that it ever really will.
Kim comes over that night–just hefts herself through Trini’s window like she sometimes does on nights when it’s late and she gets antsy, or when she can’t sleep and knows that Trini will be awake. It’s late and Trini is lying in her bed with the lamp off and the thing is, she’s so used to this at this point that she doesn’t even jump when she hears the window creak open.
(even though the first time it had happened, it had been enough to send her into some sort of Rita-induced PTSD flashback that had taken Kim twenty minutes to talk her down from)
“Sorry,” Kim mumbles, when she knocks a stack of drawings off of Trini’s desk and Trini jumps up to help her gather them.
“What are you doing here?” Trini asks, kneeling on the floor with Kim and pushing papers together like some sort of movie-script meet-cute.
Kim smiles at her sheepishly, her eyes dark in the shadows. “I wanted to see you,” she says and the words thump hotly through Trini’s veins even though the meaning is probably different than what she hears.
What she feels.
“Okay, weirdo,” she mutters, half-joking and then Kim is lying on the covers beside her in her bed.
They’re silent for a long time, Trini’s lip trembling as she tries to figure out the best way to out herself. To say, I want you to date me, not Jason . Without scaring Kim away.
But her confidence unfolds under Kim’s gaze and the feeling leaves her empty as fear creeps up her spine.
And then Kim reaches out and grabs her hand, squeezing her fingers gently. “What’s wrong with you?” she asks. “You’ve been weird lately.”
Trini doesn’t have a good answer for that, not one that has zero chance of sending Kim running into the night. She shrugs. “I’m okay.”
“Anything I can do to help?”
Trini sighs, hating the way she feels dizzy and wired at the same time from the mere offer.
“No,” she says. “I’m good.”
Kim doesn’t buy it. She rolls her eyes and then stares Trini down so intensely that Trini has to pull her hand free in order to lessen the severity of the moment.
It’s a teen movie scene, but Trini isn’t the protagonist and by all laws of 90’s rom-coms, Kim should be in Jason’s room right now, sharing this moment with him and not the best friend that is probably in love with her. Maybe.
Because the protagonist should kiss the love interest here. It should be that great moment before the low point, when everything is going okay and then something happens. Something humiliating or just enough that it breaks them apart, that everything is bleak for about ten minutes of screen time before the grand romantic gesture–the running through the streets, the song on the jukebox, the big banner declaring their love.
Trini hates that sort of thing because big moments like that only happen after something awful.
It feels more like a misguided apology than an actual revelation.
For a second, she’s certain that Kim is looking at her lips–that they’re both leaning forward and that she’s moments away from what might be the greatest kiss of her life But–
Nothing happens. Either she pulls away or Kim does or all of it was imaginary in the first place.
“You can talk to me, you know,” Kim tells her, voice soft and careful as it blows through the air between them. “About anything.”
The prospect of it is meaningful, but Trini is fairly certain it would fall apart in practice.
What straight girl would be okay with their best female friend harboring some pretty intense feelings for them?
She has a lot of faith in Kim–this girl lying in bed with her in the dark, who crawled up the side of her house in the middle of the night to ask if she’s okay–but trust can only do so much.
It’s not two days later when Jason comes to her again.
“Okay,” he says, in the middle of the cafeteria, waiting for Trini to figure out if she wants strawberry or chocolate milk. Mostly, she’s trying not to look at him. The milk doesn’t matter. “So the movie thing was great, but we’ve gotta talk tonight. And…we’re okay around you guys, but alone? I don’t know. That’s what was so bad the first time.”
“I can’t help you talk, Jason,” she tells him.
She picks chocolate because she doesn’t want to look at anything pink right now.
“I can help you ask her out, I can tell you what kind of movies she likes, I can tell you that nine times out of ten, she’ll greet you by saying, ‘Wazz poppin’, but I can’t talk for you.”
Billy is sitting at the table and she loves him, she really does.
(hell, she loves all of them, and maybe that’s what’s screwing her over)
But he must hear that last part, because he smiles as they take their seats. “Actually,” he says, “you might be able to.”
“Can you guys tell me what the plan is again? Cause I’m pretty sure it’s stupid, but I want to be really sure, y’know?”
Trini glances over at Zack, sitting on Jason’s bed with this stupid smug look on his face.
She likes him sometimes, but not when he insists on being solely expository.
“So, I’ve got Jason hooked up with a couple microphones and this hidden chest harness for my GoPro and Trini is gonna monitor his date with Kimberly to make sure nothing awkward happens.”
“So…Would you call this a double date?” Zack asks, still smirking. “Or…I guess, a tricycle, maybe?”
Billy looks at him, confused, and then goes back to strapping the harness over Jason’s undershirt, where it’ll be hidden by his button-down and tie.
“Thanks for doing this again, Trini,” Jason says, beaming. “I…I just want tonight to go well. Third date and all.”
“Right.” She swallows around the bile in her throat. “Well, you know me. Resident Kim expert. Here to help.”
Her head is starting to pound and Kim isn’t supposed to arrive for another twenty minutes. There’s something to standing in this room with three boys, preparing one of them for a date with the girl she likes.
Because Kim is her friend . Her best friend and she’s worked for it, so fucking hard for the past two months. She learned how to handle Kim on her own–learned her quirks and her habits–and she didn’t just ask her out on a date in an attempt to wing it and then beg someone else for help.
She doesn’t care, of course. Because if Jason makes Kim happy, then so be it.
She can be supportive.
Witness her being supportive. She feels her eyelid twitch.
Maybe she could fake food poisoning and guilt Kim into taking care of her like she did when she had a cold last month. Kim could make her that cheddar chicken noodle soup again and they watch bad reality TV in Trini’s bedroom and–
That sounds a lot like a date.
Maybe Jason should fake food poisoning.
“How do I look?” Jason asks, turning a little so they can see.
The camera is hidden well behind his tie, but Trini is skeptical on how they’ll even be able to see . Billy looks proud. He claps his hands together.
“Good,” she manages.
The doorbell rings and Jason waves her off to answer it so he can make sure his hair looks alright.
Kim looks beautiful and Trini immediately stops wondering why Jason wanted her to meet him here instead of him picking her up. Stops caring. Because Kim is wearing a skirt and Trini’s seen her legs before, of course, but it’s different like this somehow, in the low light of the cold evening.
She’s shivering too.
“Hi,” Trini says and Kim pushes her way inside.
“Hey,” she says in the foyer, the door still open a little. “Why are you here?”
Her tone is a little more uneven than usual, the inquisition raising up at the end and Trini frowns, trying to think of a good reason.
“Oh, well…being supportive,” she lies. “Zack and Billy are here too.”
Kim nods. “Is Jason ready?”
She seems tense, for some reason. Her shoulders are hiked up higher than usual and her tone is biting now, a little annoyed. Trini has no idea why.
“I think so.”
Silence descends and Trini sniffs, trying to break it, if only for a moment.
It hardly works.
“You look…wow,” she says and Kim brightens a little, her shoulders drooping.
Trini reminds herself that she shouldn’t hurt like this, because she’s doing this for Kim (and for the dizzying rush she gets every time Kim smiles at her now, but she’s trying not to factor that in right now).
“Thanks,” Kim says and her voice is low, hardly a whisper. “So do you.”
Her eyes drop down to inspect Trini’s outfit like she’s never seen it before, even though it’s the same thing she wore to school earlier. The moment is nearly too much. If Kim weren’t dressed and ready for a date with someone else, it would be overwhelming for a lot of reasons.
In any case, Jason comes in a second later and greets Kim with a boyish smile that makes Trini shrink into the corner soundlessly.
“You look great,” he says and Kim smiles–different than the one she’d sent Trini for her similar comment.
“Thank you,” she responds and then they’re out the door, Kimberly sending a little wave as they back out of the driveway and head towards town.
Trini watches them through the window and the moment is so stiff and unyielding for a second that she doesn’t even know what to do.
And then Billy says, “We should probably get ready, huh?” and the moment is broken.
At least it’s not the pizza place again.
Granted, it’s still Italian food, but that’s pretty much the only kind of restaurants Angel Grove has anymore, as if Rita’s gold monster had had a vendetta against fast food chains or something.
She snorts at the thought of Jason taking Kimberly Hart on a third date to McDonald’s.
“What’s so funny, pip squeak?” Zack asks from the cramped back of her car. His knees are practically in his chest and Trini rolls her eyes at him.
“Nothing,” she says.
Billy has his laptop out and is hooking it up to the camera on Jason’s chest, to the microphone in the pocket of his shirt. “Do you need to be alone?” Billy asks her and she gives him a confused look. “When you woo her? That can get pretty personal.”
Her face flushes and Zack cackles in the back, slapping the seat with the flat of his hand for effect. “I’m not wooing her, Billy,” she says. “I’m just here if Jason needs to phone a friend.”
Billy shrugs and goes back to fiddling with his computer. “If you say so.”
Jason’s truck is in the parking lot of the restaurant, just three down from where Trini is parked. They can see through the windows, but not much further than the front entrance. Jason had held the door open for Kim as they’d gone in and she imagines them holding hands on the table top.
Her stomach twists.
“–sea this time of year,” comes Jason’s voice, suddenly, through the speakers of Billy’s computer.
Trini whips her head around to look and is immediately faced with the somewhat blurry image of Kim across a table. She has her elbow leaned on the tabletop, her chin rested prettily in her palm. Trini sucks in a breath and holds it.
“Yeah, that’s true,” she drawls, sounding bored. “Weather is funky like that.”
Trini smirks at her vocabulary and ignores the look Zack is giving her.
The silence between the two is palpable, even through a damn computer screen. It’s actually a little painful to witness and Trini starts to rethink her entire life leading up to this moment.
“This is not going well,” Billy cuts in as they watch their friends order their food and then return to sitting in silence.
Trini can’t look away from Kim, at the bored, taut expression on her face. The way she keeps looking to her left, where she assumes a window is sitting. She must be eager to leave and Trini feels bad, immediately, for the thrill this realization sends through her.
Suddenly, there’s a loud thump in the speakers and Billy glances at her.
“I think that’s your cue,” he says.
And, it is.
“I don’t think even you can fix this, Trin,” Zack says and she reaches back a hand to shove him just as Billy passes her the speaker they have attached to the tiny earpiece Jason is wearing.
“Hey, Jase,” she says into it and the image of Kim on the screen jostle, as though he’s been started. She rolls her eyes. “It’s me, weirdo. Act natural, or she’s gonna know something is up. Don’t just sit there, weirdo. This is awful. Ask how her day was.”
On the screen, she can see Kim move as Jason clears his throat. “So,” he starts, “how was your day?”
The smile she sends is blinding. “It was okay,” she says. “Coulda been worse. I could have been pushed off a cliff.”
Trini frowns at the reference, at the way it ignites her chest. It doesn’t make sense for to be bringing that up. Not unless Jason knows about their first meeting.
But he doesn’t.
Because he stays silent and then she says, “How was yours?”
“Okay,” he returns.
Silence again. Trini runs a hand through her hair.
“Jesus, dude,” she says into the speaker. “You’ve talked to humans before, right?”
He doesn’t answer, of course, because he can’t, but she hopes the point got across regardless.
“Ask about her interests, okay? Ask what her favorite movie is,” she suggests. “She’s gonna say Breakfast at Tiffany’s, but it’s really ClueTell her you like that movie if she does that, okay? She’ll probably do her Tim Curry impression. It’s cute. You won’t have to pretend to laugh.”
Jason is quiet for a second and then he follows orders.
Now, it’s not just Zack who’s staring at her. It’s Billy, too. And she knows why.
This is ridiculous and super masochistic, but she’s in too deep already. If she can’t have Kim, the least she can do is make sure that whoever does appreciates the right things.
True to form, Kim says Breakfast at Tiffany’s but brightens up the moment Jason mentions Clue. Her laugh is brilliant–this bright, white thing in Trini’s chest–when it comes through Billy’s laptop.
The conversation doesn’t last long enough to make the following silence less unbearable. Trini’s starting to think it’s always going to be back to square one.
Fortunately, their food arrives and that buys her some time.
Not much, but some.
“Dogs or cats?” Jason asks a couple minutes into their meal, as per Trini’s instructions and Kim cites back the answer Trini had already prepared him for verbatim.
For a moment, Trini is able to imagine that it’s her sitting across from Kim at that table, that they’re on their third date and there isn’t any weird tension. That things are perfect and Kim is smiling at her and Zack’s stupid, knowing looks are nowhere near her.
“Just fucking talk about something, man,” Trini says a little later, because she’s getting frustrated beyond reason, now.
It’s almost like Jason is trying to bomb this.
“This is nice,” Jason says. “I’m glad you decided to try this again. I know the first date was…weird.”
There they go.
That doesn’t sound nearly as stilted as the rest of the conversations did.
Kim is nodding and running her fingers through the ends of her hair. Trini can hardly breathe at the sight. “Me too,” she says.
The silence is basically square one. Kim and Jason’s super weird reset button that gets pressed every thirty seconds.
“Can I ask, though,” Kim says and Billy glances over at her. Trini frowns at him, looks back at the screen. “What do you want this to be?”
Jason must wiggle or something because the camera jostles a little too violently and then slants to the side.
Zack tugs the speaker from Trini’s hand and says, “Yo, dude, you fucked the camera up,” into it.
Jason must hear, too, because he says, “I…Can you give me a second? My phone is buzzing.”
It definitely isn’t, and the frown Kim gives him is a good indicator that she knows it, but Jason gets up from the table anyway and Trini watches (sideways) as he pushes his way through the dining room and out the side door. When she looks up through the windshield, he’s there, barreling towards her car in shaky, frightened movements that almost seem over exaggerated.
She rolls the window down and Billy gets out of the car to adjust the camera.
“It’s like you want her to figure out I’m out here feeding you lines,” Trini tells him and Jason gives her this weird look she can’t interpret.
She doesn’t have the mental capacity for it right then.
“How am I supposed to answer that question?” he asks, sounding panicked.
Trini sighs. “You don’t know what you want from this?” she asks and Zack peeks his head around the chair, pressing his temple into hers, but she doesn’t push him away. “Why did you even ask her out, then?”
That, somehow, seems like a harder question for him. His eyes widen in alarm.
“Okay…” She sighs again and pushes her forehead to the steering wheel for a moment, thinking over her options. “Go back in,” she says. “Go in there and I’ll…I’ll help you, okay?”
Jason nods and Billy finishes fixing the camera.
“Thank you,” he half-whispers, and then he books it back inside.
“Sorry about that,” they hear over the laptop.
Kim smiles placidly. “Sure. Everything okay?”
Jason doesn’t respond, which must mean he nodded or something. “To answer your question,” he starts a second later, and Billy pushes the speaker into her hand again. Zack pulls his head away and then looks out the window.
Trini closes her eyes.
“To answer your question,” she repeats, buying him time like he’s thinking because she’s thinking. She’s lining up all her reasons in a row.
Because she shouldn’t have signed up for this. This stupid, pathetic third-wheel living where it’s almost like she’s on a date with Kim if she squints her eyes and tilts her head.
She’s not . Jason is.
Jason is on his third date with Kim, to be specific.
And that hurts more than she’ll ever be able to compromise.
She doesn’t know why he wants to date Kim, that’s part of the problem. But she has her own reasons. And she’ll never tell them to Kim, never say them out loud in any way that means anything. But maybe this is enough for now.
“I wanna be with you, Kim. I…I wasn’t sure for the longest time. I thought…I thought if I told myself enough times over that what I felt for you wasn’t real, then it couldn’t hurt me. You couldn’t hurt me, but…”
She trails off, and she’s not certain, but she doesn’t think she can hear Jason repeating her. She looks to Billy for help, but he doesn’t seem perturbed by it, which must mean nothing is wrong.
So she presses on.
“I think I’m the only person I can’t lie to. Not really. And I think you’re a close second,” she says. “I wanna be with you. Only you. For as long as you’ll have me. Because…because when I met you, it wasn’t anything special. Not that first time. But every time since then has been something else. You are something else. And I–”
Her voice cracks and her hands are shaking. Zack is breathing down her neck like he wants to reach out and comfort her, but doesn’t know enough to.
“I wanna go on a hundred bad dates with you. A thousand good ones. You’re worth every moment. Even the bad ones.” She takes a shaky breath and she can hear Jason on the other end.
She can hear him say, “This is what I was trying to tell you,” which is a good enough ending for what she’d been trying to say.
When she looks up at the screen, Kim is staring at what she assumes must be Jason’s head–that spot right above the actual camera–and her eyes are watering a little. If it’s something she can see through the pixelation, she gathers it must be a pretty emotional response.
“Yeah,” she says. “That’s enough for me.”
And then her eyes finally lock onto the camera. The same camera that’s supposed to be hidden, that she’s not supposed to know about.
“Where is she?” she asks and Trini’s heart beats out a confused, panicked tempo in her ears.
“What?” she asks, no one in particular.
“Outside,” Jason says. “She’s right outside.”
“Can she hear me?”
Trini whips her head over to look at Billy, who is staring at her expectantly. To look back at Zack who is also watching, also waiting.
Kim is looking into the camera at her and her mouth is opening like she’s going to say something–like she’s going to finish off whatever cruel joke this is.
She could hear her?
So, Trini does what she always does–that fun thing she’s never been fully proud of.
She opens her car door, gets out, and runs all the way home.
By the time she gets home, she can’t feel her legs, which she’d be worried about, but she can’t even wrap her mind around anything other than the memory of Kim’s voice saying, can she hear me, can she hear me, can she hear me. Her front porch light is off and her parents are upstairs no doubt, her brothers in bed already.
Trini doesn’t want to go inside. Can’t even bring herself to it.
She slumps down on the porch and closes her eyes, grits her teeth, tries to focus.
Kim had heard her say all of that. Jason had somehow turned whatever radio connection that had into some sort of grand public humiliation event. She’d guess, based on Zack and Billy’s looks that they’d known, too. That they’d known it was coming.
Jason must have figured out her feelings for Kim and decided to teach her a lesson. It was only a matter of time.
Her hands tremble.
And Kim–always Kim–is running down the street after.
That grand romantic gesture she never wanted, because it means the other person messed up. Because it means things are far from perfect.
Trini stands up, fists balled at her side, and wills herself not to cry. “What do you want?” she snarls. “Come to get a good laugh?”
Kim steps back from where she’s stopped in front of her and it’s unfair that Trini aches for her to come back immediately, to be closer. “I’m not here to laugh at you, Trini,” she says, but it’s not convincing.
She turns on her heel, intent on going inside to hide away from all of this. To possibly stop being a person forever.
Sorry to inform you that Trini’s existence has been cancelled altogether. Thank you for your understanding .
“Trini!” Kim says and Trini is drawn to her. Always. She stops walking halfway up the porch steps, but she doesn’t turn around. Not yet. “Why did you run?”
“Why do you think , Kim?”
She can practically see the cogs moving in Kim’s head, the way she starts to put things together. Still, it takes her a minute.
“Jason meant well, I think! He…I didn’t know what he was doing. I thought he just–”
She cuts herself off and then laughs, a little self-deprecating and Trini finally turns.
“What are you talking about?” she asks, eyebrows drawn together in confusion.
“I’m…” Kim looks beautiful in the streetlight, in the harsh light of the moon above them–dark hair haloed somehow. Trini scoffs and crosses her arms. “I…Did you mean all that stuff? The stuff you said?”
“No,” Trini says immediately. “I was just helping Jason.”
Kim quirks an eyebrow and takes one solid step forward. “You didn’t mean any of it?”
Trini shrugs and looks away. The trees in her yard are far more interesting.
“Jason…I told him, that first date when things got all weird, that I thought I knew the reason why it felt wrong…And he offered to talk to me about it just so I could…I don’t know, process I guess. I think I only said yes to him out of expectation. I think he only asked me out of expectation. We…We’re better as friends. We’d be a dating disaster.”
Trini wants to say that she’s pretty sure her and Kim are already off to a worse start.
“And I know why now,” Kim continues. “Because…Because I want all that stuff with you, too. Every part of it. You’re…You’re the one I want to be with, Trini. If you’ll have me.” When Trini doesn’t answer, she barrels on with defenses, with excuses. “I guess…It’s super fucked up, but Jason was trying to help, I think. I told him that I didn’t think you had a clue about this… thing… between us, and I think he wanted to help you realize it’s there, too.”
She smiles and Trini fights the urge to return it.
The whole thing is fucked up. And sure, Jason and her might have meant well by it–Zack and Billy, too, no doubt because they’d absolutely had to have been a part of this–but…
Kim takes another step forward and the toe of her shoe bumps into the bottom of the steps. “I didn’t know what he was doing until he came back in and…and he told me to listen and…Trini, I would never–”
“I know you wouldn’t,” Trini snaps, cutting her off. She knows how that sentence was going to end. “I’m gonna kick his ass. We don’t live in an episode of Friends. I thought…I thought I was never going to get a chance with you.”
Her fists are still clenched and she’s shaking and she can’t even really process her anger because she’s feeling too many things, holding them all in.
“You could have just talked to me about this. You didn’t need to go to a guy you just fucking went on a date with.”
“That’s bullshit, Trini!” Kim fires back, angry. “You…I thought you were either being a bitch about it or were just super naive. I thought it was obvious what was happening between us and you just…refused to acknowledge it. What was I supposed to think? I didn’t want to lose you!”
The words are harsh in the cool night air and Trini is certain right then that her and Kim might break each other apart a hundred times over before they ever start to fix each other back up.
“No more secrets between us if we’re going to do this, okay? I…I come to you and you come to me and that’s how it’s gotta work.”
Trini’s mind sticks to the if we’re gonna do this part, playing on an endless loop as she stands there.
“From now on, we talk to each other. Deal?” Kim says this with some degree of feeling Trini has never felt for herself.
She shakes her head. “Deal.”
They’re silent for a moment, but a different silence than that awkwardness during her and Jason’s not-date.
“Cards on the table–did you mean all of that? About wanting everything?” Kim asks. “Even the bad moments?”
Trini stares at her in disbelief for a moment and then smiles, tiny and afraid. She takes a step down, closer, hovering just by Kim and murmurs, “Of course I do, you idiot,” and Kim leans up, closer to Trini’s face, closer and closer until she’s all Trini can see and feel and know.
And her lips brush against Trini’s cheek, then jaw.
Trini’s arms come uncrossed and then her hands are on Kim’s shoulders, fingers tightened in her jacket and Kim presses those lips to her jaw one more time as Trini tugs her up, whispering, “Trini,” so quietly it nearly gets lost as Trini finally kisses her and lets her grip loosen.
Zack’s, “Where’s my thank you?” gets him a punch in the gut right there in the middle of the hallway the next day at school. Billy gets a half-glare (because it’s impossible to be mad at him) and Jason gets the cold shoulder for half the day and a couple of well-timed, vulgar hand gestures when she catches him throwing his puppy dog eyes her way.
Kim gets three kisses before lunch and a couple of admonishing comments whenever Trini passes one of the boys in the hallway.
“Punish me, too,” Kim says. “I’m just as bad.”
She means it seriously, but too much time around Zack twists the comment in Trini’s head and she wiggles her eyebrows until Kim kisses her again, right against their shared locker.
At lunch that day, Jason slides a note over that just says, A wild apology appears! Jason uses SORRY I FUCKED UP.
She rolls her eyes at him, but it’s hard to stay mad when he so desperately needs a haircut–when the ends of his bangs are starting to curl by his eyes.
A couple minutes later, she steals his pre-packaged cookie and Kim is holding her hand under the table, so when he says, “It’s super effective!” she lets it slide.
It’s not ineffective .
She doesn’t really forgive Jason.
Tells him as such that next day at training and then sidesteps a putty so that he gets his ass handed to him on a silver platter.
“Yeah, I um…” he says later, with a bloody nose and one hand messing through his hair. “I guess I deserve that, huh? That was…really…”
Bad , Trini wants to finish.
Later, though, it’s hard to remember why she was ever angry in the first place when Kim has her pressed into her bedroom door once they get to her house, before it’s even fully closed. By that point Jason is nowhere even close to her thoughts.
(nothing regarding him really is, actually)
Still, though, it’s basically the worst way they could have ever gotten together.
One of them, anyway. But Trini figures it had to happen sometime.
wc: 2.2k summary: “you take my hand and drag me headfirst, fearless” based off of the song fearless by taylor swift
The rain had always been her favorite kind of weather. The smell always brought a smile to her face and she loved the way raindrops felt on her cheekbones. There was also something, she had noticed, about the way the pavement looked right after a rainstorm. The light from outside made it glow, and if anything she felt like the scent of it only increased. On this particular day, her and Peter had gone out to the nearby café for hot chocolate. The hot beverage warmed her hands in contrast to the cooler weather outside. She insisted on getting a table by the window and Peter didn’t argue because it made her happy.
When she heard the first raindrop hit the glass window, her head snapped towards it to see the downpour of rain begin. A wide smile made its way onto her face and Peter stared at her. He was completely infatuated with her. The twinkle in her eyes when it rained. The way her nose got this slight crinkle in the bridge when she smiled that wide. When it really began to downpour, Peter stood up, insisting that they should get back soon before Aunt May started to worry. Peter hurried and tried to run to his car while she lagged behind. The rain had soaked them both to the bone the minute they stepped outside, but she didn’t care. She stood in the middle of the sidewalk, giggles falling past her lips as she clumsily twirled, letting the rain run down her cheeks and the slope of her nose.
What if instead of killing Gabe, Sally just kicked him out. And then after BoO dark Percy runs into him on the street... Any ideas?
Percy’s coming home from school, taking the subway to his mother’s apartment when it happens.
The recognition is immediate, despite the fact that Gabe has gained even more weight and has lost all of his hair.
There’s an immediate tugging sensation in his gut, his rage flaring, fists clenching, but he forces himself to calm down, to look way, and try not to focus that that sorry excuse for a man is sitting just across the isle from him. It’s been a couple of months since the end boo and he’s been training with Chiron to control the anger within him non stop - to not lash out and snap at every hurdle that the fates throw his way and he’ll be damned if Gabe of all things will be the reason that weeks upon weeks of practicing self control will be thrown down the drain.
He forces himself to remember that part of his life left more than three years ago.
But the rage is bubbling deep within him and he’s never been the type to forgive and forget.
It’s not Gabe that happens to be the deciding factor, it’s the little girl beside the man. It takes a moment to figure out why Gabe’s hand is clamped around her wrist and why he’s even with her in the first place but then it hits him like a punch to the gut.
She can’t be more than six and she’s sniffling, tears beaded at her lashes and an awful purple discoloration forming around her eye. His eyes narrow on the bandages that scatter her arms and he immediately thinks of the own glossy polka dot scars on his own arms - the permanent reminder of Gabe pressing a burning cigarette to his own flesh.
He realizes that Gabe has done the same thing that he did to Percy and his own mother. He has found someone else, some one else with a child, that he’s been abusing them . And if it’s anything like his own experience, Gabe has probably made it so that this poor family can’t escape from him… at least not without the threat of actually killing him - the only way Percy and Sally actually made it out the door.
So when Percy stop comes up, he doesn’t get off, instead he pulls his hood up farther to ensure Gabe won’t recognize him and feigns listening to music as he keeps a watchful eye on the duo.
Then finally, four stops later, they get off and Percy follows at a large distance. He’s not surprised when they end up at Percy’s old apartment, the very one that he and his mother walked away from more than three years ago.
He waits until the little girl has entered the threshold before making his presence known.
“Excuse me sir, but you dropped your wallet.”
Gabe pauses at the door way, glancing back towards the strangely familiar voice when he’s slammed into the wall, hands around his throat and door slamming shut.
It’s been nearly four years and Percy has changed so much, but Gabe can still see the same kid in the man before him. He’s taller, towering far over him and his face more angular, sharper, rougher, but there’s still a windswept mess of black tousled hair and there’s the same look in his green eyes - the same loathing and hate that use to make Gabe laugh when Percy was so young now strikes a deep fear into him.
Not only that, there is something even more wrong the boy. Something off kilter with the entire vibe he get’s from him - something that feels distinctly like predator capturing, toying with it’s prey.
“Because I sure as hell remember you.”
Then Gabe is burning, his mouth opening in a soundless scream because everything is so so hot and it’s as if his blood is boiling within his veins.
And when finally finally the light fades from Gabe’s eye does Percy let him go. He’s breathing hard, his entire body tingling with the raw power of what he’s done.
There’s no remorse, no guilt, nothing. In fact, there’s a dark happiness, a contentment, he feels with the deed. After all, all he’s done is rid the world of another monster.
it’s not about power or the distilled soundtrack of retch / trying to keep up with the sad song you were singing on your own / turned up the speakers so that no one else could hear my dreary voice / caught my shirt on a sharp edge tonight / left for night seas / didn’t come back with full mind / didn’t think to leave a note behind / eyes to the road now / oh, swan dive into the mess
you are a beautiful glacier and i’m a puddle of piss / don’t relive all the pain and the gloom, there’s more to it all / like the bright eyes / and the sun rise / of another blue crystal clear day / so many tears / nothing’s in vain / lessons learned / guitar burned / i’m just a lonesome mess / cigarette ash and ashtray miracles / we’re in a boat that’s sinking at a snail’s pace / we’re in it together
Okay so Boba wouldn't be caught DEAD doing something as ridiculous as singing, right? Except that one time Jonah would. Not. Sleep. And dear dad finally had enough, so he pulled out the last trick he had. And Leia caught him. Can I get this in one shot format? If you can't tell, I'm a sucker for Leia catching Boba doing that ONE THING that ONE time. It's definitely my kink, if I have one. Also, bonus points if Boba sings something his dad sang to him... Just saying.
The most amazing thing that Leia has learned from motherhood is that a ten-month old baby can give every appearance of being sound asleep, and yet when their parent makes an attempt to slip from the room, the baby’s head snaps up as if pulled by an invisible sting, and that’s when the crying starts.
Finally she went to her own bed, exhausted and on the verge of tears. “Just let him cry,” she snapped to Fett, who nodded without opening his eyes.
Surely Jonah will put himself to sleep eventually.
One hour passes.
And then two.
He’s still crying.
Finally she sits up with some desperate hope in mind that if she goes to him now, if she gives him a comforting pat or covers him with the blanket that he has most certainly kicked off, he’ll settle down and go to sleep.
He has to be tired.
He has to be.
Fett touches her arm. “I’ll go,” he says, and she doesn’t question it. Her head is already on the pillow, her mind devouring the thought of sleep like someone starved for food or water.
She doesn’t know long she sleeps, time has been lost in her addled brain, but when she does wake, her husband is still gone from their bed.
And then she hears it, and her first thought is that Jonah is whimpering, but it’s not a baby’s voice.
She leaves her bed. It’s not a distressed noise, necessarily, it’s just-
Someone is singing in a low, toneless voice. The words are Mando’a, but it’s not difficult to translate. It has the simple cadence of a children’s song.
There’s a tree
In the woods
Cut it down
Carve it well
Make a spear
There’s a rock
In the ground
Dig it up
Forge it well
Make a sword
She can think of only place Fett would have heard a Mandalorian children’s song. His father must have sang it to him. She peeks around the door into Jonah’s room.
Her husband is sitting on the floor, his back to Jonah’s crib. His eyes are shut. He drags through the words as if he’s just barely awake. She touches his shoulder and his eyes open. There’s a question in them.
She looks down into the crib. Jonah looks asleep. She shrugs and then holds out her hand to help him up from the floor.
This is the best self-portrait I’ve literally ever drawn and it’s for a shitty meme idea that I did in 3 hours
Just wanted to compare/contrast/conwhatever?? myself and Rask… this was stupidly fun to do and if you can draw, or cobble pics of yourself and your muse together, I strongly encourage you to also shirk your real life duties and do this! Tag me in that shit :))))
I hope you enjoy this! Now you know why I’m so terrible at saying hello to you online or why Rask forgot who you were that one time in game. Whoops!