Ino eyeballs the small cardboard display of roll-on lipgloss in the civilian drug store with something akin to wonder even as her insides cringe at the memories the innocent dancing cherries evoke.
Her fairy for a best friend hums distractedly as she scrutinizes the modest array of vitamins, heedless to the way Ino gingerly reaches for one of the childishly colored tubes. She didn’t even know they still made the stupid things! Rolling the translucent red vial between her long fingers, the blonde marvels at how the product hadn’t changed a bit from when the two were children.
A soft smile curls her rose painted lips as she thinks of a time as children when Sakura had randomly given her a silly tube of clear lip gloss for “being the bestest friend ever, Ino-chan!” She had cherished it, loved it even, because her “bestest” friend had given it to her.
But, that was before Sasuke, and as everyone knows, Sasuke ruins everything.
A/N: I haven’t written fanfic in forever, but I love love love Archie and Chloe and wanted to explore them a little bit. Hope you enjoy :)
After Rae leads Finn out of the pub with a look of determination screwed on her face, and after Chop makes some half-cocked excuse as to why he and Izzy have to leave, Archie and Chloe are left alone at the table. Around them, the other regulars ebb and flow, and faces Archie has long associated with Friday Night at the Pub blur together. Archie’s on his sixth beer and Chloe’s on her third vodka tonic when he returns from the bar with their next round. Chloe smiles her thanks and knocks back half the glass in a single swallow. He thinks he should tell her to slow down, especially because he has no idea when she last ate, but she’s smiling for the first time in days, and he doesn’t have it in him to tell her to stop.
“All right, Chloe?” he asks, as she puts the glass back on the table.
She looks at him and giggles, giggles the way she did the night they first met, when Chop introduced her as, “this fit bird who came down to the shop last week.” Archie smiles ruefully back. “All right, Archie. Jus’ a long week, weren’t it?”
“Feels like the longest week of my whole life,” Archie agrees. He pulls a cigarette out of the carton in his pocket and then offers the box to her. Chloe shakes her head. He has a feeling she’s got no interest in being sober tonight. “Do you wanna talk about it?”
She shrugs, the noncommittal shrug she reserves for things that are monumental but that she can’t talk about right now. “You remind me of Atlas when you do that, you know? Atlas and Ayn Rand.“
Chloe looks at him blankly, probably trying to process what he’s just said through her alcoholic haze. “Who the fuck are ya talking ‘bout, Archie?”
“Atlas,” Archie repeated, “He was a titan in Greek mythology. He held the whole world on his shoulders. Ayn Rand wrote a book called Atlas Shrugged back in the fifties that was all about the importance of capitalism and why the Soviet Union sucks. She said if she ever got the chance to meet Atlas, carrying the weight of the world on his shoulders, she would tell him to shrug. When you shrug, you look like you’re straining beneath the weight of the world.”
He’s probably lost her, because she’s looking at him like he’s half out of his mind. But then she smiles real slow-like, and he’s got a feeling this is one of those smiles she reserves just for the Gang—one of those smiles where you can see the cracks just beneath the surface, if you’re looking hard enough.
“You’re definitely a bit off, Archie,” she says, after a moment, “but you’re pretty perfect, as well.” Then she collapses into a second fit of giggles, and Archie decides it’s time to take her home.
Before he takes her to her house, Archie brings them to his and takes her upstairs to sober up. His parents are still being weird about him being gay, and bringing Chloe round at half three in the morning is bound to cause even more confusion, but Archie knows what Chloe’s parents are like and he’s not about to give them any more of a reason to make Chloe feel like shit. He makes her coffee and offers her a shower, both of which she accepts passively. “I don’ need a shower, Archie,” she mumbles, as he pushes her into the bathroom. Never mind the fact that she smells like the inside of a distillery. She comes into his room about ten minutes later, looking a little bit more sober.
“I don’t have any clothes now,” she says, accepting the coffee mug with her free hand while the other holds up her towel. Archie nods towards large t-shirt and an odd looking pair of boxers on his bed.
“It’s the best I can do,” he says, as she eyes the pile. The t-shirt is black with KISS printed across the chest in bold, white letters. It used to be his dad’s, but Archie appropriated it for painting the windows last summer and has yet to give it back. The boxers are also black. They’re about three years old, so he’s assuming they’ll fit Chloe. Though looking at her collarbone he has a feeling she hasn’t eaten since before she ran away.
She smiles and hands him her coffee mug back. She pulls the t-shirt over her head, and drops the towel. If there were ever a litmus test for Archie’s sexuality, he’s pretty sure this would be it. He hands her the coffee back after she finishes pulling on the boxers. For a moment, they stand there, staring at each other. And then Chloe asks, “Do you think I’m a good person, Archie?” right before she starts crying.
Archie has never been good with crying girls. Even when his mom cries it makes him feel awkward. But Chloe’s sobbing outright and Rae’s probably getting sexed up, which means both she and Finn are out of commission. And most likely Izzy and Chop are doing the same thing. Which means there’s just good ol’ Uncle Archie to comfort their Chloe. He knows he can’t let them down.
“Chloe, I think you’re an amazing person,” he says, as he puts his arms around her and envelopes her in a hug, “I think you’re the best kind. It’s why you’re one of me best mates.”
“But I’m not funny, or smart, or sweet. I’m shit with advice and with talking. Nobody’s ever wanted me for anythin’ but my body.” Some of the words get swallowed by her attempts to stop crying, but Archie catches enough of what she’s saying to figure out the rest.
“I don’t really care about your body, Chloe,” he quips, pulling out of the hug to look her in the eye. “You’re right fit an’ all, but you’re not really my type.”
he laughs at that, not a drunken giggle, but a sound that sounds kind of broken and hopeful at the same time. “You don’t think I’m a bitch?” she asks, after a moment.
“Only sometimes,” he replies, smiling. She swats him half-heartedly and leans back into the hug. When she finally pulls back, he thinks some of the weight has fallen from her shoulders.
During the football match Finn begged him to come and watch, Archie is pointedly trying not to make eye-contact with anyone while also trying not to get pulled into Chloe and Rae’s conversation about who was the hottest player on the field. Rae, ever loyal, is firmly standing behind Finn on this, but Chloe has her eye on Ravi, who’s tripped over himself twice because he’s caught her watching him.
“What do you think, Archie?” Chloe asks, when Rae has yet again proven that Finn is better looking than Ravi. They both turn from in front of him to gage his response. Rae doesn’t look like she really cares one way or the other, but Chloe’s got that determined look on her face, and he has a feeling that he’ll be grading men one to ten by the end of the game.
“I think you’re both mental,” Archie quips.
Chloe shakes her head, “I’m serious, Archie. Who do you think is the fittest guy on the field right now?”
He feels like this means something. He feels like this is some kind of ritual which will cement not only his sexuality but Rae and Chloe’s acceptance of that sexuality as well. Like picking which guy he thinks is best looking somehow makes his abstract theory of being gay a flesh-and-bone reality. “I don’t know,” he tries, not sure he’s ready to take that plunge.
Rae goes to turn around, but Chloe puts her hand on Rae’s knee to stop her. “Archie, it ain’t that hard of a question.”
“All right.” He scans the field, but he already knows who he’s chosen. He’s had a crush on Tristan Hull since year ten, when Tristan moved here from Northampton. For his part, Tristan is probably the straightest man in the history of men. “Hull’s pretty good looking, I guess.” He tries to play it off, but Chloe’s smiling all the way to her eyes.
She looks pensive for a moment. “Yeah,” she says, like she’s passing judgment. “He’s fit. A bit too tall for me, but I guess he’d be the right size for you. Too bad he’s got a different girl every week.” And she flashes him one of her carefree grins before turning back to the game. Rae rolls her eyes before meeting his and they share a smile at the expense of Chloe’s off-hand remarks. Then she turns back to the match, her eyes following Finn’s ass up the field. Chloe, for her part, fixes her hair and rolls a tube of lip gloss over her lips—for the fifth time in less than an hour.
Archie leans back, glad to have the Gang back together again. After this, they’ll meet up with Izzy and Chop at the chippy and plan out the rest of Rae’s birthday celebration. Izzy will sit on Chop’s lap and Rae and Finn will pretend to pay attention while really having a secret conversation only the two of them will understand. Chloe will steal all of Archie’s chips and then complain that she’s eaten too much, and Rae will probably eat one of Finn’s and feel the exact same way. Izzy will giggle about something terrible Chop says, which will prompt him to say it out loud and cause them all to grown, and maybe that’ll be enough to make Chloe forget that Archie’s type is tall, blond, and athletic. Yeah, he’s definitely happy to have everyone back.
And yet, even though nothing’s changed, it all seems a bit different.
Do u like lana del rey? I love her but I hate how she dressed as a chola and the virgin of Guadalupe in tropico :( I feel like she appropriates n takes advantage of Hispanic culture a lot, for example the name itself is Spanish because she was hanging out with Cuban friends in Miami and liked the glamour of the name, whereas Hispanic people are discriminated because of their name. N how in songs like black beauty she sings about how she wishes to be Spanish I find it hard liking her personality
I used to like her a lot and her old music. I got on the Lana bandwagon a little late. And now I’m just not into the whole sad music thing. Like why are you so sad lol you grew up in a rich family and made yourself “poor”. She isn’t as authentic as most people think. I think the thing that turned me off so much from her is that she literally made herself poor on purpose and had the privilege to travel so much etc cause her family is very well off. Where as there are people who are born poor and Would kill to have the privilege to refine their craft in their art but they cant cause they’re poor. I’m surrounded by poor artists everyday. My dad was a poor artist who’s dad was an alcoholic and abuser and his mom had to work non stop and my dad was this wild kid who couldn’t wait to get away from home and get to school so he can draw and not be scared for his fucking life. He lived in this small house with three older siblings. And he was too poor to buy his own art supplies. He’s a drummer too and had to wait to get to band to play. And she glamorizes things that are considered poor and stuff when I grew up in a small desert town and went to a hole in the wall art school and was surrounded by poor artists who would have to steal charcoal and paper to be able to create art or have to use their cheap phones and run down Dell computers to record songs in the back rooms. I’ve lived in Tijuana Mexico and grew up in the poorer “ghetto” of LA and it’s not fucking glamorous lol. People used to get killed and shit everyday and my best friend grew up smack in the middle of Compton back in the day when it was still bad. And I remember hearing drive by’s when we were little girls playing dolls in the living room and bars all over Windows and having to hide under beds when we heard that crap and it was terrifying. My friend lived near an alley way and they found and old woman literally dead in the dumpster. I remember delivering turkey dinners for thanksgiving to people who had absolutely nothing and lives in these tiny apartments that had mold and leaks and their water was shoddy. One thins I noticed is when Latinas wear hoops and wear things that are considered “ghetto” you get compared to her and it’s annoying cause it’s like… No. I’m not dressing like her. I’m dressing like every Latina has since like the 80’s… I’m dressing like the girls I saw on the streets that would ride the Lo lows and wore their bamboo hoops and tank tops with their dollar store bras peeking out and timberlands and wore their jerseys and cherry roll on lip gloss. I’m dressing like my girls. I respect her as an artist and I admire her collective of inspirations and I find her to be a fantastic writer but I hate that she didn’t actually struggle because it was necessity and makes it seem like she’s this poor sad girl who has been used in the world when she literally is just a rich white girl who drank too much and her parents sent her to some school to recover or whatever lol. I respect real struggle and authenticity. Not a nice fabrication from management. Sorry lol