part 1/12 of a Hartbig fic based on tracks from the Arctic Monkey’s AM. Other parts here
Track 1: Do I wanna Know?
(Do I wanna know)
If this feeling flows both ways?
(Baby we both know)
That the nights were mainly made for saying things that you can’t say tomorrow day
It’s quite the evening out. Mamrie and Grace are getting more shots and Hannah is beginning to feel a little out of place. It’s not that she doesn’t like straight bars. She tends to like most bars. Not as much as she likes having a glass of red wine over hors d’oeuvres at home, Grace’s, or Mamrie’s, though still, quite a bit. But this bar is dingy, full of sketchy people, and she’s actually been hit on by skeevy men. Twice, though it’s nothing compared to Grace and Mamrie, who are both dressed to the nines in an emerald and a blue dress, respectively. They’re just better at immediately shutting the situation down.
Before Hannah can do any more worrying, Grace is back. “Where’s Mamrie?” Hannah asks.
“She ran into some old Brooklyn comedian friends who have insisted she have a round or four with them. But that’s okay. I’m kind of sick of it here,” Grace admits. “Wanna go to a quiet place and get some dessert? I don’t want to dance anymore but I also don’t want go home at ten like some sort of grandma. Hannah smiles, because, yes. This is exactly what she wants. Quiet. Less humans. More talking.
Hannah and Grace walk down the street to a tiny French restaurant and bar. “I’ve heard wonderful things about this place,” says Hannah. Grace just nods, trusting worldly Hannah to know a lot more about local food than Grace, who in all honesty, sort of wants a Bloomin’ Onion. There’s something about drunk Grace and chain restaurant food.
Hannah holds the door for Grace and inspects the restaurant. She sees a small waitstaff in crisp white head-to-toe, the walls covered in delicate wallpaper and watercolors. “It’s cute,” Grace notes. Hannah nods, very excited to get her hands on the fresh bread that would soon appear. The hostess, who does not smile, leads the ladies to the smallest, and only available, table, before pouring waters for the girls, no eye contact.
Grace’s eyes are laughing a little at the lack of hospitality and Hannah’s blue orbs sparkle back. When the hostess disappears, Hannah asks Grace, “How big is the stick up her ass? Just like a general estimate.” They laugh. The server approaches and Hannah orders merlot. Grace would’ve normally opted for champagne or maybe a house cocktail, but hey, why not follow suit. If Hannah picked it, it was probably good.
The bread appears and both faces light up, perhaps too much. There is some silence as the two sample the various whipped butters, Grace careful to not use too much. “Okay. this is fucking great,” Grace notes. “I know. Thanks for bailing me out of there, Grace.” “It’s my job to keep the boys away from you. I am your ‘girlfriend’ you know.” Hannah laughs. Almost as hard as she did at Grace’s text inviting her to do The Girlfriend Tag in the first place.
This is when Grace began to bite her lip, nervous. Hannah detects this immediately and registers it as new. Grace’s brown eyes are uncertain, and growing quickly wider. Grace grabs another chunk of warm sourdough and tears at it, devouring as if to hold something back. Hannah grabs more bread as well. And now they are just starting at the bread, rather than each other.
“Grace,” Hannah says to her, who inhales sharply at the sound of her name, “What’s going on? You can tell me. You can always tell me.” Hannah grabs Grace’s hand. It’s very much in a “friend way,” Hannah is sure of it. Uncharacteristically, Grace squeezes Hannah’s hand purposefully before letting go. Hannah wonders: Do I wanna know? If this feeling…
“Actually. I can’t.” The server comes back but Hannah waves her away, probably accidentally coming off as rude. Grace stares directly into Hannah’s eyes as it gradually becomes obvious what is going on here. Grace is silently losing it as she brings her hand to the base of her face, trying to suppress the need to cover her whole mouth.
“Oh.” Hannah is taken aback to say the least. This is just about the most unlikely series of events ever to pile up in front of her. “Do you want to talk about it?” Hannah knows that regardless of Grace’s answer, they will be talking about it. Grace doesn’t even bother to respond because she knows the same. “So this crus— The way you fee— the—“ Grace interrupts a struggling Hannah, “Let’s call it a ‘thing,’ shall we?” Hannah suppresses a giggle and doesn’t really know why.
“This ‘thing’. It started when?”
Grace tucks a strand of brown hair behind her ear and stares briefly at the white tablecloth before returning to blue eyes. “I really don’t know Hannah.”
Grace blinks, deathly slow. “A while ago. Like when I had the boyfriend ago.” Hannah does not know what to say to that. Not even close.
“This is why I didn’t want to say anything. I know this is bad. It’s really, really bad but I seriously cannot stop. I think about you before I go to sleep. I think about you when I hear Ke$ha or The 1975. And I keep making awful puns on screen and in my daily life because I am perpetually thinking about you.” I’ve had too much to drink? or, am I finally being honest? and once I began, i couldn’t stop? Grace does not know, but whichever was true Hannah does know now. She knows about the thing.
Hannah drains her wine in seconds, something she’d never normally do. Then again, Grace never talks about feelings. But here they are. Hannah, you are torturing her. Say something. “Well. That’s that, then.” There is a prolonged, uncomfortable silence. Grace’s eyes shrink to slits, fuming.
“That’s what you have to say about this?” I deserve so much more than what ever the fuck that is. Grace was not about to let Hannah walk all over her freshly exposed heart.
Hannah sighs. She hates this. Why did her straight friend of two years all of a sudden get this crush, thing, on her? This is not fair to anyone involved. She takes a deep breath that doesn’t help. “I know, Grace. But this can never happen. You know that.” Hannah says, sweating. “Why did you say something, Grace? Because now we’re going to be constantly repressing a burning need to be on each other and…” Hannah realizes what has just happened. Hannah realizes exactly which words have escaped from her mouth.
Checkmate. Grace’s angry frown twists up into a victorious half smile that she is trying aggressively, and failing, to hide. “Well it looks like this does flow both ways, doesn’t it, Hart?” Hannah looks at grace guiltily, before staring straight down at the table. Her gaze does not shift.
She’s pissed because this thing just went from possible threat to legitimate danger and it is all Grace Helbig’s fault. Well, up to the end. Hannah fucked this thing up even further.The little blonde slams some bills, certainly too many, onto the table and begins to don her leather jacket because, here’s the thing, when it comes to straight-girl, Grace, Hannah really didn’t wanna know. She departs.
Grace finishes her wine in one sip before she makes the decision to follow or to not.
Like it or haayyyte it? Which track are you most excited for? Tell me in the notes or ask box. With love, A.