imagine being on tour with Calum and the concert had just finished for the night. As usual, Calum had run off stage and scooped you into his arms, lifting you and spinning you around, high off the adrenaline from a great show. Then he’d tell you that he was going outside to smoke and that you could wait for him in the green room and he would be back in twenty minutes. This wasn’t an uncommon occurrence, so you’d nod and give him one more kiss before heading off to the green room. Twenty minutes would go by, then thirty, then nearly an hour and you’d begin to worry. The venue was in a pretty safe area, and there were tons of people were milling around, so it was hard to believe that anything bad had happened to him. But then you thought back to news stories you’d heard, Dateline episodes you’d watched, where terrible things happened in broad daylight and you made up your mind to go search for him.

You first checked the outside of the venue, peering out the back door into the dark night, but you didn’t see Calum. So, you searched the venue, wandering through the winding hallways, big ones branching into smaller ones, which led to even smaller ones, like the blood vessels you’d learned about in biology. You prayed you wouldn’t get lost. You eventually found him in one of the smallest, narrowest hallways on the east side of the building. Unlike the main hallways it wasn’t bustling with crew members and venue employees, instead it was completely silent, empty except for you and Calum. He was lying on his back on the floor, the hallway not wide enough to accommodate his entire body, so he had his legs up flat against the wall, looking like a human L, staring straight up the ceiling.

Your footsteps echoed down the empty hall as you walked toward him and he finally turned to look at you. “Mind if I join you?” You asked. When he shook his head you got down on the floor and copied his position, your shoes beside his red Nikes on the pure white wall. You knew that if you’d been at home your mother would have scolded you for putting marks on the wall, but here you really didn’t care. You could tell that Calum was in one of his thoughtful moods, the ones that would have him grabbing his journal and scribbling at the speed of light, never letting you see what he had written. Whenever he was in one of these moods, he grew quiet, so you were surprised when he spoke.

“Tonight was just one of those nights, you know, like I got up there and I couldn’t believe that this is my life.” You turned to look at him. His eyes were still fixed on the ceiling, cheeks flushed from the high-energy show, shiny black hair pressed to his forehead with sweat from running around under the spotlights. “I mean so many people spend their lives working dead-end jobs that they hate and I get to do what I’m really passionate about every day. I’m really lucky.”

You turned you gaze up to the ceiling as well, feeling pretty lucky yourself. Whenever Calum started thinking like this, he almost never talked about it, preferring to write in his journal or mull over his thoughts alone over a drink. You knew that he didn’t open up to just anyone, it was something you had to earn. And you’d finally earned it. Like an oyster parting to reveal a pearl, Calum finally trusted you enough to share his deepest thoughts with you. You chose your words carefully, knowing that this was a big step for him. “You deserve it. All of it. You’ve worked hard, and you’ve got so much talent. There was no way it could go to waste.” You reached down and found Calum’s hand, holding it tightly, your hair spread out behind you on the dirty linoleum floor like a fan.

You lay like that for hours, talking, until your legs fall asleep and your back began to hurt from being in the awkward position for so long. But you didn’t complain, hearing Calum talk was worth all the pain, all the dust bunnies in your hair. By the time a harried crew member found you, saying that the bus was about to leave and if you didn’t hurry it would put you behind schedule, you felt like a barrier had been broken. Calum had opened up to you like never before, the layer had been peeled back, and you loved him even more for it.

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Fic Flashback

anonymous asked:

Can I make a fic request? I have this idea but I can write for shit and I think you're awesome so here goes: zimbits- elevator au: one person is in the elevator and is in a huge hurry and pounds the close button despite seeing the other person coming. Pettiness ensues.

Holy crap, Anon. Idk how to write this but here goes.

Jack Zimmermann did not usually forget his manners, but when he did he was in a hurry. “Fuckfuckfuckfuckfuck,” he muttered as he half sprinted, half power walked through the lobby, slid into the last open elevator and hit the close button about thirty times. The big steel doors began to sigh shut.

“Oh! Hold it for me please!”

Jack glanced up in time to see a handsome blond gentlemen sprinting for his elevator, but he was all the way on the wrong side of the lobby and, well, the doors were already closed. Jack spared him an apologetic, slack-jawed look, feigning deafness as the doors squeaked shut.

Athletics Director Eric R. Bittle—Coach Bittle to the Samwell Men’s Hockey Team—frowned at the closed elevator door and took a sip of his pumpkin spice latte. For a millisecond, an overwhelming inferno of hot rage swept over him.

Snubbed! In his own building! On this day! Didn’t people know any manners?

And just as quickly, the anger smoldered and died. Wrath simply wasn’t in Bitty’s nature, like buying premade pie crust or writing with his left hand. He propped his hip on the wall while he waited for the next elevator and opened Twitter.

[Got furious over something dumb lol.#extra]

Jack slowed to a normal walk and tried to control his breathing. Normally the sprint from the elevator to the conference room wouldn’t so much as wind him, but there didn’t seem to be enough air in the room and that meant he needed to Chill Out before he got into a full blown panic attack. He made himself take a few deep, slow breaths, and then he entered the room.

They were chattering. Late night research paid off; he recognized University President B. Knight at what passed as the “head” of the big, round table. On his left sat the head of the math department Dr. Adam Birkholtz, who was speaking animatedly with the head of the pre-med department, M.D. Oluransi. On Knight’s other side was the head of the arts and behavioral sciences department, Dr. Larissa Duan, engaged in what looked like a staring contest with head of humanities Dr. Derek Nurse. And there were a handful of faces he hadn’t seen on the website faculty page.

Jack’s hands sweated but he put on his most ingratiating smile. “Good morning!”

Knight’s mustache twitched and he nodded at the empty chair on the empty side of the table. “Please, have a seat. We’re still waiting on one last faculty member.”

Jack sank into the free chair, overwhelmingly grateful he wasn’t late-late. He lined up the important documents and scrubbed his palms over the seams of his pants. He touched the lucky button behind his pocket square. He needed all the luck he could get for this job interview.

He was calm. He was in control. He was going to do just fine.

“Aha! There he is!”

“Very professional, Bitts,” Knight scoffed, but his eyes twinkled. “Show up fifteen minutes late with a Starbucks.”

“I’m not fifteen minutes late,” the cute blond gentleman that Jack had very obviously, very rudely, shut the elevator doors on, said around his grin. “And I’d’ve been here even sooner if some yahoo had held the elevator for me.

Jack could feel his soul leaving his body. Oluransi and Birkholtz laughed. “Ooh! Who could deny you, Bitty?”

If someone could pointedly not look at someone, Bittle was pointedly not looking at Jack. With gusto.

This is hell, Jack realized. His anxiety finally killed him. His heart gave out in the elevator and this was his punishment for being rude. He always thought that when he died, there would be a sense of perspective, that he could finally relax because the worst had already happened.

This was not the case.

Over the course of the interview, Jack proceeded knowing he wouldn’t get the job. His hands quit shaking. The stakes, impossibly high, were shuttled off the metaphorical table and he handed his CV and a cache of his published research to the president to flip through. He answered questions carefully, methodically.

He took his time, secure in the knowledge that the worst had already happened: he wasn’t going to get the job.

He was wrong. The worst had not happened, but was yet to come. He got the job, not only as an adjunct professor of North American modern history, but as an assistant coach. Working directly under Director Bittle, the cute guy he was rude to.

This was hell.

Because it would be one thing if Coach Bittle—Bitty—called him out on it. Or if he held a grudge. But it seemed he had completely forgotten the elevator mishap, and plied Jack with more pies and tarts and coffee cakes than any one man should consume. And he was sweet, accommodating, kind. If he’d been a dick, Jack at least could have justified being a dick first. Or settled into his new position secure in the knowledge that the Elevator Incident was memorable to at least one other person.

He could feel himself making a big deal out of practically nothing. But he couldn’t make himself stop.

Bitty skated across the ice, whistle in hand, and leaned against the boards. Their players steadily streamed into the rink, two or three at a time, sleep deprived and mute. Bitty grinned. “It’s time. For Soviet Calisthenics.”

Jack had never seen a grown man burst into tears at six in the morning. By the end of the practice he could see why. “A bit grueling this early in the season, eh?”

Bitty merely raised an eyebrow as he took a plastic container from his work bag and pushed it into Jack’s hands. Some kind of egg dish, still warm. “Jack Zimmermann. We’re not here to play games. We’re here to win.” He handed him a plastic spork. “Now eat your quiche.”

Around Halloween Jack finally cracked. He stepped into an empty elevator with Birkholtz and Oluransi, and turned to see Bitty hurrying down the corridor. “Rans! Hold the elevator!”

And then the small space was a cacophony of hooting and yelling. “Get wrecked, Bittle!” Holster bellowed while Ransom hammered on the close doors button.

The metal doors slid shut right as Bitty drew near, laughing and rolling his eyes and calling them assholes.

“What?” Jack spluttered into the sudden silence.

“Listen, bro,” Holster said, resting a hand on Jack’s shoulder. “You have not lived until you have seen Bitty’s face when he thinks he’s finally gotten into an elevator—“

“And you pick him up and put him on the wrong side of the doors—“ Ransom interjected.

“And then close them before he can get back in,” Holster finished.

Jack frowned, floored. “Why?”

“Bro. Because we’re stupid.”

The faculty Halloween party was a great deal more exciting than Jack would have expected from a university. But then, Shitty brought tub juice and Lardo brought champagne and between the two of them and Holster and Ransom starting up a beer pong tourney, the teacher’s lounge in Founder’s Hall was bound to get rowdy.

Jack wasn’t entirely sure where the cat ears he was wearing had come from, or where his tie had gone. He and Shitty staggered into the elevator—campus Papa John’s was calling, brah—when Bitty didn’t step into the elevator with them so much as tumble. His momentum pressed Jack into the wall, and there was a nice armful of coach there, yes, excellent. Jack dropped his chin onto the top of Bitty’s head like it belonged there.

“Bittle,” he murmured.


“Bittle. I am so, so sorry about the first day we met. And I was rude. You know the thing.”

“Mmm. I forgive you. Buy me pizza.”

“Bittle, I’m so sorry. But not sorry enough.” And he lifted Bitty off his feet and plopped him on the wrong side of the doors just as they started to slide closed.

“Get wrecked Bittle!” Shitty howled. Down the hall, the noise in the lounge doubled at the sound of Bitty being denied elevator access.

Jack did end up buying Bitty pizza that night.

Another year closer to thirty but at least I can still pull off twenty-five…right? Considering I spent my birthday on shift yesterday, I’m celebrating it today nice and early with a birthday beer before noon. So classy, I know.