Claire stayed cocooned in her bed for just a day, shutting out the world from her misery. Joe had arranged for some annual leave from work, but she didn’t want to be alone for any longer than necessary. She’d only just begun to get dressed when the doorbell rang, its distinct echo filling the hall with a jaunty off-pitch tune.
Pulling her hair back into a loose bun, Claire inhaled deeply as she placed her palm on the door handle.
“Claire,” Jamie stood on her stoop, a large bunch of multicoloured flowers gripped tightly between his fingers, “I didna know whether you would answer or not.” He seemed meek and uncertain and Claire immediately felt horrid for excluding him.
“You didn’t have to,” she whispered, stepping aside for him to come in.
The kettle was already boiling as Claire took the bunch of colourful blooms from Jamie, her head dipped so that she could avoid eye contact. In the kitchen she stalled for time by cutting the stems of the flowers and placing them in a tall vase before placing it on the windowsill.
Silently, sensing her melancholy, Jamie snuck up behind Claire and wrapped his arms around her middle. His hands unconsciously rested over her abdomen, causing Claire’s fingers to tip the vase, spilling a few droplets of water.
“J-Jamie…” she stuttered, her palms sweating as his large fingers splayed over her belly. He was warm, almost unnaturally so and she couldn’t help but lean back into him. As if pulled from her, the grief of the past twenty-four hours seemed to rise up again to pull her under and Claire let her head fall forwards as the tears started to cascade down her cheeks. “It was only two or three weeks, it might not even have been at all. I sh-shouldn’t be so–”
“Hush, Claire,” Jamie soothed, his nose nuzzling the top of her head as he rocked her backwards and forwards, “why did ye no’ tell me?”
It was a statement that held no judgement or resentment. In fact the way he spoke to her made Claire feel even more drawn to him. Suddenly her mind was blank and vocalising all of the reasons in her head that she’d made up as to why she’d kept it from him at all seemed an impossible task.
But she had her misgivings, and even with her mind as blank as it was she could still muster the words to give one solid answer. “I’m used to being alone, Jamie. Even when I was with Frank…I was still alone. Why should I alter that now?”
It was said with such despair in her voice that Jamie’s heart dropped. She was right, of course. He’d been alone, too. But he had always had the support of his sister and brother-in-law-to-be. Never had he to face anything truly alone. She certainly had Geillis and Joe, but apart from them, she had no true confidantes. Having known him only such a short while, it was inconceivable for her to suddenly be able to trust someone with such a large part of themselves.
“Aye, I ken, Claire. And I’m sorry…I shouldna have expected ye to contact me. I just –did.”
Claire’s heart lurched. But as quickly as the feelings of immediate dread began to flutter within her they left, soothed by Jamie’s calm motions. He ran his hands over her tummy in circular motions as they swayed softly in Claire’s sparse kitchen.
“I can’t be that for you, Jamie,” she whispered. “The girl who falls madly and deeply in love with the handsome guy.”
“…and I dinna want you to be, Claire. I just want you…as ye are.”
The steady drip of the tap broke the silence and Claire heaved out a massive breath.
She was lying already. Again. And the worst thing was, she knew Jamie could tell and yet she couldn’t stop herself from saying the words.
“I can’t love you at all, Jamie.”
Claire bit the inside of her lip to stop herself from retracting the words instantly and waited with bated breath for Jamie to say something…anything.
“Do you think you were…pregnant?” he said instead, turning the topic of conversation away from Claire and her stunningly large issue with commitment.
“I’ll never know. But I’m never usually late.”
“If ye were–”
“Don’t,” she interrupted, her tone fast and slightly sharp as she cut off his line of thinking without hesitation. “Whatever you do, don’t finish that thought, Jamie. Please. I just can’t think about it right now. It’s still too raw.”
Jamie nodded. He knew Jenny, his sister, had struggled with similar troubles before having her first bairn (out of wedlock, much to their parent’s shock) only a year before and he knew opening those wounds would only lead to a dark place. “Alright. But I need ye to know that I’m here. That I will be here, nay matter what.”
Now it was Claire’s turn to acquiesce.
“Yes,” she sighed, her chest loosening as her heart began to slow its pace -finally. “I promise I’ll remember that.”
Sliding his hands upwards, Jamie manoevered himself closer, his hips falling in line with the curve of the base of her spine as his hands continued to massage her gently.
“Take me to bed, Jamie,” Claire whispered, the breathlessness of her words sending shivers down his spine. “Take me to bed and make me forget it. God, please?” Not above begging, Claire joined her fingers with Jamie’s and brought his hand up and over her still clothed breast.
“But yer…” he said, swallowing audibly as he rocked his hips in time with her soft movements. She felt divine but he didn’t want to end up as a crutch, alleviating her pain whilst causing them both to suffer more than necessary. Although his body rebelled against such a notion, his heart and his head both knew that it was the right thing to do. She might need comfort, but she certainly didn’t need to use sex as a weapon - especially so soon after when she’d surely be in the grips of some serious period pain.
“No, not anymore. It’s done. It was quick.”
“Claire…I want ye,” he muttered, his words jagged and short as she rolled her arse into his groin suggestively, “Christ I do, but no’ when yer hurting like this. No’ when yer in pain.”
“Fuck pain, Jamie. Fuck it all. Please, I won’t hide from you again, I’ve said I won’t. But *fuck* I want you, so badly…”
He ached. Her words ran through him sharper than the slice of a blade and although he could sense her hesitance to admit, audibly, her feelings for him, he could feel the desperate need that she had building inside of her. They were linked, the pair of them, inextricably through some invisible tie that would be almost impossible to sever and no matter how hard she fought against it, he sensed that she would only fail.
It didn’t matter now that his head told him to leave, run far far away and let her *really* think this over before they made anymore steps in their physical relationship, he had felt that pull and he knew that she had felt it too. She could have gotten sex from absolutely anyone. God knows she was attractive enough. But she hadn’t. She’d stayed away from the world and kept her pain hidden, isolated in her own small flat. Until he had intruded.
“Jamie,” she gasped, her nipples hardening beneath his palms as he moved his hands under her pyjama top. He’d done it without actively contemplating the action, responding to her body unconsciously as they’d been moving together, as he’d been thinking.
“I canna do this, Claire. No’ just for the sake of it. I…as much as yer no’ that girl,” he said, his fingers stroking her pert nipple, the tips of them tingling as he discovered more of her enchanting flesh, “I’m not the guy who just has random encounters. I’m not.”
“O-oh…” she murmured, her breath coming uneven now as her one free hand gripped the counter, her knuckles going white with the pressure of holding herself together.
It was mean, he thought, the misty fog of lustful need almost blinding him, coaxing her out of herself like this. But they’d both begun to walk this path together, she was just as much to blame for it as he was. Claire had meant to use sex to bind her own wounds, to sew her back together when she most needed a glue to heal her broken heart and Jamie had shown just the right amount of willing. And Jamie had seen his chance to assist with that, in the only way he knew how.
He loved her. He’d loved the notion of her before they’d even met, but having spoken with her, drank with her, eaten with her and even *slept* with her, he knew that there would be no other for him. Not now, not ever. Jamie breathed out, aware that he’d been holding his breath for some time now. His father’s words struck him like lightning and he felt the wisdom of them take hold of his heart as he pushed his crotch solidly against Claire’s arse.
‘When you meet the right one…you’ll know.’ Brian had said to him, and he had been right. He did know.
Realising her advantage, Claire reached back as Jamie became lost to his revelation. Undoing the buttons on his flies she pulled apart his jeans, unceremoniously shoving his boxer shorts out of the way in the process as she spread her legs to stand either side of his hips.
“Claire,” he groaned, trying to manoeuvre himself out of her grasp as his words seemed to peter into dust.
“Jamie,” she replied, unwilling to let him escape so easily. She was breaking down his barriers little at a time, unafraid to use her body to get what she needed - no matter how selfish it was. “I need *you*.”
It was the ‘you’ that broke Jamie, the intonation of it lulling him into a false sense of security. Although it was a fib, Claire thought she’d enticed him, bent him to her will and partially she had.
It only took a moment and he was inside her, the damp moisture of her coating him and drawing him as deep as he could go. Jamie hadn’t even noticed her lack of underwear before he’d felt the familiar sensation of her heat surrounding him.
Flopping against her, Claire held onto the kitchen worktop with more force and pushed her arse backwards. She felt high, lost to the sensation of him pinning her against the marble work surface. Twisting her head, she angled her mouth so that she could tempt him closer. Needing some manner of intimacy, she whispered his name, calling him towards her.
Through the heavy inky fog that effectively joined him and Claire, Jamie felt her skin prickle as she moved to kiss him. He wanted to stop himself. He *wanted* to carry her to bed and hold her properly, in a warm, comfortable space where he could take back some measure of control and see her properly cared for. But in this moment he knew she just needed…this. This - whatever it was - was what Claire had to have in order to chase away some of her demons.
After, he reasoned, he would do as he wanted and love her properly. In her own bed, with her thick sheets shielding them both from the world outside.
“Oh - fuck!” Claire cried out, her knees shaking as Jamie pushed his mouth against hers, effectively stealing the words from her lips as he rolled his hips against her arse.
She could feel him against her womb, the pulsing ebb of that peak coursing through her cold veins, bringing life back into her tired body.
Keeping one hand on her breast, Jamie shifted the other down…lower, between her legs where he pushed two fingers against her. She was squirming, her thighs closing against his hand as if she meant to keep him there forever and the feeling of it, her core closing around his cock made him gasp out in pleasure.
With his fingers locked between her legs, only inches away from his cock, Jamie cried out and came to her…hard and fast. His whole body shook as he fell, his vision blurred and he worried, through the thrill of it all, that he might be hurting her with his body weight as he gripped her to him.
Claire couldn’t move. Nor could she think. Her whole body was fraught, on the edge of that blissful abyss, as his fingers twitched against her…*there*. Her brain seemed to melt as she fell, her cheek hitting the countertop slowly, against the cool marble. She almost screamed as she came, the force of his orgasm shooting through her as he intimated her own.
It was minutes before she could think clearly again. First it was just the twitch of a finger, and then the small movement of her arm as she felt around for Jamie. She couldn’t even tell if he was still holding her against her own kitchen worktop.
“J-Jamie?” She questioned, the darkness clearing as the faded floral print of her bedroom came into view, “why am I…?”
“You passed out,” he whispered, the subtle rumbling of the city beyond invading their quiet bubble, “and I didna think you’d be comfy on the floor of yer kitchen.”
“You didn’t just…leave?”
“Nay,” he scoffed, rolling his eyes in the dark where he lay behind her, his arms holding her against his bare chest, “I didna leave. Do you want me too?” He regretted asking the moment he had, thinking he could live in blissful ignorance if she didn’t directly ask him to sod off.
“No,” she sighed, shuffling further beneath the quilt as the night wore on around them. “Stay, at least for tonight.”
Jamie smiled, his fingers clenching together against her stomach as he slid his leg between the two of hers, lending her yet more warmth.
“…and thank you,” she whispered, thinking him to have fallen asleep already, “for bringing me to bed. For taking care of me.”
“You’re welcome, a ghradh,” he returned, when he was *certain* that she had, feeling her shallow breathing as she gently lulled herself into a deep slumber. “I wouldna leave ye. Not now, not ever…mo nighean donn.”
((This is a small scene that was cut from Tumbling Down because it didn’t quite fit. I still liked it though, so I figure I’ll put it up as a one-shot ^^;))
His coffee was too
bitter but it did not matter. It was a pleasantry, really. If Genos was tired
no amount of caffeine could help him—his body would shut down, and that was
that. No, it was for the sake of the cyclist sitting across from him. To make
…Not that this
was very comfortable.
For either of
“So…yeah. I just
wanted to check in with you.”
Genos stared at
the C-class fidgeting in front of him. This was a very awkward meeting. It
wasn’t that he didn’t consider Mumen a friend, he did, it was just…he had never spent time with him when
Saitama-sensei was not around. That was what Sensei did, not Genos. For a while
he even felt a residual jealousy at Mumen for how much time he’d spent with his
Request: … I saw your bias from Day6 is Jae .. soo, can I possibly request someone from Day6?? Thank you :)
Member: Day6′s Jae x Y/N x (ft. Day6′s Brian)
“How much does it cost?” Jae sighed, struggling to keep up with Brian’s excited pace.
“I think you just have to buy a drink,” Brian nodded. He didn’t even have to look back to know how unenthusiastic Jae was about the situation.
Then again, it took a lot for Jae to get actually enthused when it came to Brian’s ideas.
“But like…is there a price range for the drink?” Jae questioned. “Or can I survive off of cheap beer for most of the night? I hear they have Pabst for a dollar a glass-”
“Jae, I think you’re hipster is showing. Does anyone actually drink that anymore?” Brian chuckled, turning the corner at top speed.
“No, my broke is showing,” Jae grumbled. “But that didn’t stop you from making me get out of bed.”
“It was seven in the evening!” Brian gasped. “I wasn’t sure if you were going to bed really early or waking up really late.”
“Plot twist,” Jae sighed. “Both, I was doing both.”
“Well, I’m happy to see you were so happy to join me,” Brian muttered.
“Can I live tweet this nightmare?” Jae grumbled. “Hashtag someone please save me from the kang.”
“I knew I should have taken Wonpil,” Brian sighed, shaking his head.
Jae gasped and immediately halted his steps. He reached up and dramatically grasped his t-shirt above his chest. “You take that back. You take that back right now Brian Kang.”
Brian paused as well and spun around to look at his older member. He rolled his eyes and grabbed at Jae’s wrist. “I’m sorry, now come on, we’re going to be late.”
“Are you going to introduce yourself to people as Brian?” Jae asked, dragging his feet. “Or Younghyun? Or Young K? Oh please tell me you’re introducing yourself as Young K.”
“Why did I do this? Why did I do this to myself?” Brian whispered. “Invite Jae, you said. It would be fun, you said.”
“I am the wingman of your dreams, Young K,” Jae snickered. “I was made for this moment.”
“You know you can’t be a wingman when we’re speed dating,” Brian grumbled. “We’re going to be on our own.”
“Whoa, whoa, whoa,” Jae said, furrowing his brows as he paused again. “So you’re telling me…we can’t be a tag team duo?”
“This isn’t wrestling,” Brian groaned. “I assumed you knew what speed dating was.”
“I mean…I’ve never actually done it,” Jae hummed. His eyes were wide as he searched Brian’s face. “I don’t have enough dad jokes for this.”
“Time to unlock the emergency vault,” Brian nodded. “Cause we’re here.”
You readjusted in the uncomfortable bar stool and cringed. A solitary bead of sweat was cascading down the back of your knee. It caused you to shiver, and you let a light groan escape your lips. It was a sure sign that you were nervous.
You would be lying if you said you hadn’t been at least a little bit curious when your friend had brought up the idea of speed dating. You had both been single since before you came to Seoul, so in theory, it made sense. You still hadn’t expected for her to sign you both up for the nearest speed dating event she could find once your discussion had ended.
You had always planned on living intentionally. You would never find love if you didn’t get out there and actually open yourself to it, so here you sat, a nervous mess at a night club in the middle of Gangnam.
“Hello and how are you!” the speed dating organizer called over the hum of conversation buzzing around the room.
You looked up nervously from the cocktail you were prodding at and toward your friend who had quite literally drug you here. She was smiling brightly as she tossed her perfectly styled hair over her shoulder. If she wasn’t your friend, you would have hated her. She looked like she had her life completely together without a single nerve in sight. She caught your eye as you analyzed her and winked, shimmying her shoulders as a signal for you to calm down.
“Ladies and gentleman, welcome to our Seoul singles event!”
The crowd that had gathered around cheered and began to clap. The organizer grinned as she looked around the room and nodded. “Yes! I know we’re all very excited. Let me lay down how this works! Each of you have been given a sheet of paper. Write down who you are meeting with, circle the names of the people you feel you connected with the most! At the end of the experience, we’ll take your papers and match you up accordingly. You will only be given each other’s contact information if it was a mutual match! You’ll be emailed your matches within the next few days, and it will be your chance to contact each other then!”
The group of daters cheered again to signal their understanding. You, however, couldn’t make a sound. You looked down to your name tag, firmly placed on your right chest pocket. You made sure to adjust it, even though it was already perfectly visible. You took a deep breath and nodded to yourself. It was healthy to step out of your comfort zone…wasn’t it?
“You have five minutes with each date!” the organizer continued. “At the end of the five minutes, I will hit the buzzer and you will move on to the next date! You will have ten dates in total, understood?”
Just shy of an hour talking to strangers. Just what you wanted to do on a Saturday night.
“You look like a reasonable person,” the next man sighed as he placed his beer glass down on the small table separating the two of you. You looked up to his name tag, albeit upside down. You were careful to scrawl his name on the appropriate line of your date sheet. Jae. You only had one more line beneath his at this point and could finally relax. You could see the light.
“Um…thanks?” you hummed, tilting your head. This was a strange opener.
You had been sitting for longer than your butt would appreciate and began to fidget in your chair. You had heard just about every opening line or pick up in the book at this point and were exasperated with the thought of having to sit through ten more minutes of this.
“Frankly, this beer tastes really bad,” he continued. “And five minutes is not the ideal amount of time to get to know someone.”
“Agreed,” you nodded, stirring at what was left of your own drink.
“Do you like pizza?” Jae asked, focusing intently on your face.
You blinked in surprise and slowly began to nod. “I’ve been known to.”
“What about puppies? Do you like puppies?” he asked.
“Who doesn’t like puppies?” you whispered, furrowing your brows.
“Satan probably,” Jae nodded. “So I came here with my friend Brian, you know, the guy who sat down before me?”
“Right,” you confirmed, still not quite following his line of thought.
“I also see that you did not circle his name,” he nodded. “Now, if I could be so bold, what do you say we blow this popsickle stand?”
“…go on,” you hummed, looking casually over your shoulder. You eyed the organizer walking around with her buzzer. You then looked toward your oncoming date at the table over and sighed.
You readjusted your gaze to look back at Jae. A grin began to tug at the corner of his mouth before he bit his bottom lip. He scooted closer to the table and by extension, closer to you. He looked you in the eyes as he dropped his voice. “So there’s a pet shop a couple blocks down from here. We can pet all the puppies we want until they close. And right next door is this little Italian joint that has subpar pizza. I want to take you there.”
Your eyes grew wide as you stared at him, unsure if he was extremely confident or batshit crazy.
But he was pretty gorgeous. Your eyes gazed over his lightly colored hair, gracefully disheveled as it fell over his forehead. His dark eyes were covered by large frames, but they made his face even more interesting. His cheekbones and jawline would probably slice you open if you touched them, and his smile was absolutely to die for.
Was it wrong to trust him just because he had a pretty face?
“I get it,” Jae nodded. “I can see in your eyes. Why go with this guy? He could be a serial killer. Granted, his hands are entirely too feminine and soft for any sort of homicide, but I still don’t know his life. He offers me puppies and food and the next thing you know, he’ll be luring me into his passenger van, never to be seen again…
…but then again, if we both bounce now, I can save you from the special kind of terrible homeboy next to me offers. I’ve heard him tell a story about how he saved some orphans from a fire about seven times now, and I’m pretty sure that shit is made up. So help me, help you.”
You grew anxious as you looked up again, narrowing your eyes to see that there was only a little over a minute left of your conversation. You looked back down to Jae’s face when he wiggled his brows, patiently waiting for an answer.
“Have you shopped this idea around to the other girls you’ve sat with?” you asked, finally finding your voice.
“They already had their questions lined up,” he sighed. “It would have been rude of me to interrupt…
Plus none of them had eyes as incredible as yours.”
“Do you think hitting on me will seal the deal?” you chuckled.
“At the very least I thought it would maybe speed up the process,” Jae grinned. “As we have about fifty seconds left. So what do you say? Ready to get banned from any more speed dating events?”
“I…well…” you hummed. You looked toward your friend, looking pretty intimate with Jae’s friend Brian. You were amazed at how close she could manage to get with someone in a manner of five minutes, but he looked entranced. You looked to Jae and bit your lip, slowly allowing yourself to nod.