Tom Holland x Reader: Apartment
Summary: You and Tom Holland are neighbors in the same apartment complex. You have a crush on him, he has a girlfriend. What could go wrong? You could think of five separate incidents.
Word count: 7,132
No 1: the coffee maker
incident (which was all harrison’s fault)
The moment your knuckles leave the door it’s already swinging back, revealing a face flushed with relief. Tom Holland’s eyes flutter closed, leaning his head against the door frame and looking up at you through his lashes with a smile plastered on his face.
“Oh thank god you actually came. You’re good at fixing things, right?” he asked, ushering you into his apartment before hearing your answer. You’re a little reluctant to enter, thinking that you’ll somehow track mud across his pristine white carpet, or smudge a stain on his suede chairs that weren’t in there the last time you’d been over.
“I’m good at putting Ikea furniture together, if that’s what you mean,” you call after him as you hop around on one foot, attempting to slide your boots off without appearing like a fool. You look around once more, taking in the features of Tom’s place.
You can’t say you like what he’s done. There are too many colors; blues and yellows that are too bold, an abundance of throw pillows against a couch that you swear your parents had gushed over in a Rooms-To-Go catalog. None of it looks like him, and you have an inkling as to why, but you keep your mouth shut as you follow the sound of two voices into his kitchen.
“You help me with my T.V all the time. Are you good with stuff like this?” Tom inquires, looking at you over his shoulder. He’s standing in front of something, hunched over the island in the center of the room. On his left, staring at you over his mug, Harrison is sipping away on something.
There’s a smug look in his blue eyes that makes you want to tip his drink onto his shirt, but instead you ignore him, standing on Tom’s right. In front of you is a simple small coffee maker; not a Keurig, but something akin, you could imagine.
“What’s wrong with it?” you question, looking around the top and sides for damage. Tom has his knuckle in his mouth, looking worriedly at the device in front of him. You’ve never seen such an anxious look on his face and it makes your brows crease. “Tom?”
“Hm?” he says, snapping his eyes back to you. The normally sparkling brown hues are muddy, clouded with something you can’t identify. “It’s just… I don’t know what’s wrong with it. I noticed it was out of water and I went to refill it, but when I pressed the button, it wouldn’t make anything.”
Perplexed, you flipped open the lid, seeing nothing wrong. You checked the coffee ground compartment, seeing a pierced, but otherwise unused k-cup sitting in there. With crossed arms, you pressed the power button again, just to be certain.
The three of you watched as the machine’s light started to blink. You cut your eyes over to Tom, wondering what kind of stunt he was pulling. Opening your mouth to speak, you were cut off by the red light blinking out, only for nothing else to happen.
“See!” Tom cried out, fisting his hands in his hair. It curled out of his fist, making two small pony tails at the top of his head. Your eyes narrowed, realizing just how much his hair had grown in the past few months. You hadn’t seen too much of him to have a decent comparison, but you remembered it being much shorter.
“—just wait till she comes home and sees this broken! She’s going to kill me!” Your heart drops into your stomach, limbs suddenly feeling heavy. The coffee maker belonged to his girlfriend. You nodded, now understanding why he had sounded so urgent when he’d called you.
“You’re fucking Spider-Man, ya? Just go out and buy a new one with all that Marvel money,” Harrison pointed out, rolling his eyes as he took another sip of his drink. “She won’t even know the difference.”
“They don’t even make this stupid model anymore, she’s going to know it’s broken. And I didn’t even break it!” he exclaimed, his voice shaking with worry. “What am I going to do?”
“You’re going to calm the hell down, that’s what,” you chided, resting your hands on Tom’s shoulders. He relaxed under your touch, walking backwards as you steered him onto a bar stool. “It’s not the end of the world, dude, just breathe,” you reminded him, watching as his chest heaved heavily. Your hands felt warm as they slid down his arms, coming to rest on the island as you examined the coffee maker.
You drained it of its water, checking the main compartment for any irregularities. Immediately you noted a white film around the sides, and you paused, looking from the sink, to the device, and finally at Harrison.
“Harrison? What are you drinking?” you asked, pulling your phone from your back pocket and shining the flashlight down to the bottom.
“Hot chocolate,” he replied carefully, eyes darting between you and Tom. Peering down, you carefully wiped your finger against the bottom of the compartment, your nails scratching against a hard surface, coated with something.
“Haz, there’s no pot in the sink, or in the dishwasher. What—HAZ!” Tom growled, having put the pieces together. “Did you put milk in the coffee maker?”
“I mean, yeah,” he admitted a not-so-guilty look across his face. “It was sitting right there, and it was faster than heating up a pot.”
“Ah-ha,” you chuckled, closing one eye to look down into the coffee maker. “That would explain this weird shit covering the bottom of this thing.” You gave a pointed look at Harrison, who hadn’t even tried to look remorseful. “You do realize that when you don’t clean up heated milk, it leaves a hard coating on metal. This coffee maker basically has a hot plate that boils the water and then sucks in into a tube. My best guess it that the milk hardened, and the water can’t get through,” you assessed.
“Well how do we fix it?” Tom asked, crossing his arms and looking at you. He seemed to believe you had all the answers, and you bit your lip to hold back you stutters. You didn’t want to disappoint him, to make him think you weren’t the person for the job.
Cutting your eyes over at Harrison, you gave him a pointed look; you made it look reprimanding, but it was really to wipe the smirk off his face. He’d had a smug look since the moment you walked in and it bothered you, making the tips of your ears feel hot.
“Well for starters, don’t do it again,” you bit out, glaring daggers at Harrison. He didn’t reply, but he did walk out of the room, shrugging his shoulders as he walked behind you.
Tom noted the fixed stares you gave him, but said nothing of it. You pursed your lips before looking at the brunette, holding out your hand and asking for a knife.
He blinked, warily pulling out a butter knife and placing it into your palm. You frowned at it, turning it over in your hands. “I need a sharper one.”
Tom raised a brow, hazel eyes glimmering with suspicion. You snorted, wondering if he was actually afraid of you with a knife.
“What, you think I’m going to kill you or something?” You joked. You wondered for a moment if your joke was too dark for a guy who was just your neighbor, but he eventually chuckled, handing you a knife with a sharp, long blade. You gave him your phone, and asked him to shine it down into the machine. Silently, with the two of your heads close together, you both bowed your heads with work to do.
This was an awkward fifteen minutes. Every now and then Tom would pick his eyes up and watch as your face scrunched in concentration. Your lips would part as an almost inaudible curse passed through, making him laugh a bit. Every time you felt him move you would try not to catch his gaze, attempting to discreetly look at him. You could feel how close he was and it felt wrong that your heart was beating so fast, or that you couldn’t breathe.
After what felt like hours, you retracted, taking the machine to the sink to wash it out. You filled it and plugged it back in, waiting patiently with a mug as you started it.
Tom looked as though he was holding a breath, and sure enough, when the coffee streams out he sighed, leaning against the counter with his entire weight, looking as though he’s been saved from the fires of hell.
He turns, eyes shining in praise as he gushed a bunch of rushed thank you’s, his accent slurring everything together. You’re really just nodding and smiling, telling him that it’s fine and no big deal. You’ll tell yourself anything to get rid of the hammering in your chest, louder than construction work as you feel blood rush to your face.
“I seriously don’t know what I’d do without you.” He sounds like he’s speaking about your presence in general, but that can’t be true. All you’ve ever done for him was put together furniture and now fix his coffee maker, but he seems to like you, as a friend and neighbor. Which you’ll take.
“It’s no problem at all Tom. And it’ll be less of a problem if I can have this,” you pull the mug away, bringing the rich black coffee to your lips.
“Yeah, yeah, of course. Do you want to stay for a bit? I feel like you’re always in and out, and-“ his words die as his cell phone rings, the ringtone that default sound that makes you jump. He takes it, holding his hand up apologetically, but you shake your head. You weren’t going to stay anyways.
Grabbing your things, you pass Harrison, who looks pretty comfortable on a couch that isn’t his, sipping on the last of his hot chocolate. He smiles when you walk by, but it’s a knowing one, as though he can read your thoughts. You scoff, but before you can get your shoes back on, Harrison says, “You should be thanking me.”
That really riles you up, and you laugh, a forced, sarcastic thing. “For what?”
“If it wasn’t for me you wouldn’t be making any moves.” There’s a wink, but you don’t really care to return his comment. You strain out a “Bye, Harrison,” before closing the door and leaning your back against it.
The cup in your hand is scorching your palm, but you smile regardless. Another reason to knock on Tom’s door.
No. 2: The incident where you meet his girlfriend and things go wrong
You had this sick feeling in your gut that toady wasn’t the best day to bring back the mug you borrowed from Tom. It was simply the day after, the most reasonable time to drop by and say, “hey, I forgot I took this” without seeming like you harbored it, or cast a spell on it. The little thing sat neatly in your hands, cradled gently as though it was made of crystal.
Your knock was verging on two minutes ago, so you decided to go again, wondering briefly if you should say his name. Calling him may have been a bad idea, but before you could form his name, the door swung back, revealing a brunette that was not Tom.
His girlfriend’s caramel colored hair was a cascade of freshly made curls, evident from the fact that her makeup and outfit were already complete. She lacked shoes, and a sense of hospitality, sizing you up like bully on a playground. When she reached your eyes, you balked, deciding whether it was better to state your purpose, or just drop the item near her feet and scram.
It would have been much easier for her as well, until Tom caught your eyes from farther behind her. “Y/N?” he questioned, but excitedly, as though he was happy to see you. That made his girlfriend’s lip curl into a sneer, an action that didn’t go unnoticed by you.
“Oh, uh,” you started, wanting so bad to bolt, but transfixed by Tom’s smile and gentle demeanor. He was dressed, indicating that he was probably going out. And from the progress they both had on their outfits, you could guess it was possible they were going on a lunch date.
You felt foolish, your heart drooping in your chest as you resigned yourself to stick with the plan. What did you expect, that his girlfriend would just magically be missing every time you came into his apartment? A dumb idea, one fueled by your fluttering heart, but also by your jealous mind.
“I accidentally took this last time I was here. Sorry,” you said, holding the cup out to the girl. She dropped her eyes to the cup, but made no moves to take it from you. Her hands stayed rooted on the door, and you felt like you could melt under her scrutinizing gaze.
Tom saved you, however, taking the cup from your hands with care, wrapping his hand around it. Your hands brushed each other’s, and your fingertips felt so warm and fiery, igniting your nerves in flames. You looked up to send him a smile, but you caught the look his girlfriend gave you.
Her blue eyes startled you, being so wide and so angry at the same time. Her perfect nails seemed to dent into the metal door as she gripped it with all her might. Her posture was rigid, feet set apart in a fighting stance. You thought her unoccupied hand was going to reach out and punch your teeth out.
The silent threat made you jump, the ware slipping from your fingers and smashing to the floor before you had time to react. You could only pull your feet away and watch in horror as it fell on its handle, small shards of grey porcelain scattering across the floor.
You want to cry, curl up beside the shards and be swept away into a dust bin, you’re so mortified. To your right, she’s smiling a little, resting her hand on Tom’s shoulder as she proceeds to ask if he’s okay. She tiptoes to look over his shoulder, as though she wasn’t standing feet away when it happened. Milking the moment, you catch the glint in her eyes when she rubs his back, saying that she’ll get a broom.
Tom nods, saying a faint, “okay babe,” before he’s taken aback by the kiss she plants on his cheek. You note the pink mark it’s left, a small, but powerful reminder that he’s taken, and that no matter how shy and polite and cute and neighborly you are, there’s nothing you can do about it.
She casts a look that is part sinister and part mocking over her shoulder, but it turns into surprise as the door closes, Tom stepping out into the hall. He’s got his hands behind his back as the door clicks shut, leaving the two of you in the hall.
“Sorry about that, I don’t know how that happened.” He rubs the back of his neck now, as if he’s really considering the idea that he might have done this.
“No, you have nothing to be sorry about. I’m the one who broke it, I should be cleaning it up, I,” your head is fixed towards the ground, unable to meet his gaze. You really just want to walk away, but it was hard, with him so close to you, his height and yours almost the same. There’s no need for tilted heads when every time you look up, it’s just his eyes on yours, and it makes you so frustrated.
“I’m really sorry about this, I promise I’ll get you another one.” In some really nice universe, this is the part where Tom chuckles and says “You don’t have to do that. Just go on a date with me and we’re even.”
But this is not a nice universe. It’s not even close. This universe is horrible and cruel, laughing at your pitiful crush on a taken British boy and your shitty attempts at being his friend.
This universe sucks, so you leave him with that half assed promise and run down the stairs, not looking back as he calls your name.
No. 3: the incident where you hear something you shouldn’t have (but always wanted to know)
It’s late, and probably your own fault that you’re miserable and at home and have to watch a fucking slideshow about Roswell, New Mexico. The lights are mostly off in your apartment, save for three little hanging lights above your kitchen counter. One sole bottle of Heineken is untouched, probably warm since your friend left over two hours ago for her date.
And now, with a pounding headache and an impossibly bad mood, you felt your limit snap as loud shouts and a bumping bass sounded from Tom’s apartment. He wasn’t a rowdy guy, and his girlfriend didn’t seem like the type to annoy the neighbors at ten pm, but you could think of a certain blonde that would.
It had been weeks after ‘the breaking of the mug’, weeks of building back the confidence to look Tom in the eyes, and weeks of him being crazy nice to you. He was always asking you to come over, wanting to make up for how bad your last encounter was. Eventually you both settled back into a comfortable friendship, but that only persisted as long as his girlfriend wasn’t around.
After another week of that arrangement, you felt guilty, almost as though you were doing something forbidden. You remembered the shame and palpable tension in the room that occurred every time she came home to find the two (or three, there was no way she could get rid of Harrison) inside. Almost any conversation would drop, and you would leave, giving him a curt goodbye.
It was dumb, it was strenuous and it was so unnecessary. But it felt exciting.
You swallowed that excitement down fast, knowing that there was nothing between you two. You were neighbors, and finally friends; you weren’t going to ruin it because of your unrequited crush on him.
The pounding in your head increased when you heard with clarity and annoyance the repetitive yell of shots. The song seemed to shake your entire apartment and you growled, stomping over and banging on Tom’s door with your fist.
“Hey! It’s a fucking Thursday night!” you yelled, despite your normal timid manner. You seriously just wanted to fall straight asleep and head to work tomorrow and make a final decision on this location. You were losing time and patience and the capacity to care when a face split into a wide grin upon seeing you at the door.
“Hey hey, Y/N!” Harrison’s blue eyes were unfocused and shiny, his smile too big for his face. He stumbled to grab your arm, his grip much tighter as he used all his strength to pull you in.
“Guys, look who I found!” The word “guys” had you at unease, but you surveyed the people around you carefully. You would know the Spider-Man cast anywhere, and Tom’s apartment was definitely a place where you’d seen them the most.
Tony and Jacob both had on tilted ball caps, and when Tony ran to hug you it fell off. “Oh thank god you’re hear Y/N!” he hiccuped, slinging an arm around your shoulder. “Our man Tom has something to tell you.”
The room dissolved into giggles. It sounded like a first grade classroom, their laughter so innocent and playful. The only boy who didn’t seem to be partaking in the fun was Tom, his lips set in a pout as he shoved Jacob weakly.
“Knock it off, boys,” he told them his voice sharp against theirs. He didn’t appear to be as drunk as they were, but the goofy grin that followed proved otherwise.
After another round of laughter, you tried to shrug Tony away from you, but he was heavier without full control over his body. You felt uncomfortable being around four drunk men, who were all stronger than you. Despite knowing that they meant well, the entire situation read badly.
“Tony, please get off me,” you mumbled, which seemed to earn his attention. He stood up straight, raising his arm up mechanically. You took a step back, holding your arms to make yourself small. “Guys, I get that you’re having fun, but I have work to finish, so can you-“
“You’re a location scout, right?” Jacob asks in the moment of lucidity. You nod, watching warily as Jacob stands, holding his hand out to you.
“Jacob Batalon, best actor in this room. If you’re ever in a pinch for actors, you know where to find me.”
“Jacob,” you said slowly, your handshake becoming too long. “We’ve met before.”
“Best actor in the room? Tom has a fucking BAFTA!” Harrison argued over the music, but you both paid no mind to him.
“Uh, I think I’d know if I met anyone as pretty as you. At least, I think you are. I can’t really see, but you’re Y/N, right?”
“Jacob,” you sighed, exasperated. Pinching the bridge of your nose, you were halfway to launching into an explanation before he cut you off.
“Tom’s been going off about this Y/N girl. She lives across the street or something. I’m like, Tom, dude, amigo. How do you know if she’s pretty if she’s all the way over there?” He pointed out the window and you frowned, wondering just what in the world he was on about.
“Jacob I know you! I live next door.” He snapped his fingers loudly, looking back at Tony with wide eyes.
“Tony! It’s the girl, the one Tom mmhmm-“ Harrison covered Jacob’s mouth with his hands, trying to sit him back down. You raised a brow, looking between the four of them before sighing.
“Clearly I’m not getting anything through to you, so I’ll just do it myself.” You huffed, turning to what you believed was the source of the booming music. A stack of black rectangular sound systems sat on a shelf below Tom’s T.V, each of them appearing to be on. In the background, yelling had ensued, with Jacob’s mouth finally free of Harrison’s grip. You paid no mind as you decided to simply turn the volume down. You twisted the dial a little too far, making the music so quiet, that their shouts became clearer.
“Why the hell not! You’re not going to have any other chance!”
“Your girlfriend dumped you, now is the perfect time to tell her!”
“And say what? ‘Hey Y/N, I’ve been in love with you since the day we met’?”
It kept going, not even missing a beat as the four boys started piling shout after shout on top of the others. You, however, had your hands over your mouth, slowly rising to stand up. Your mind tried to process the words in the order you heard them in, making sure it matched what you thought. Your heart felt like it would leap from your chest, knees knocking as you struggled to understand.
Tom liked you. He had since the day you met. And he didn’t plan on telling you.
It was news to you that his girlfriend was no more, but even bigger than that was the idea that each of his friends already knew that he was in love with you. That sentiment seemed like common knowledge, considering its blunt outburst hadn’t shocked anyone to silence.
Suddenly Harrison’s cheeky winks and Tom’s bright smiles seemed more than just coincidences. You wanted to run up to Tom and tell him that you felt the same way, that he meant more to you than just a neighbor or a friend. You felt your heart clench as you realized that those words were never meant to be presented like this. You weren’t supposed to know.
In some nice universe Tom would tell you over another shared mug of coffee, or an a first date somewhere sweet and thoughtful. In some nice universe you could kiss him for saying that, and he’d kiss you back.
But this was not some nice universe, and this shit always happened. You let yourself out, sliding back against the cold metal door and letting out a sob that had been working its way through your chest.
Perhaps that nice universe would only ever be a daydream
No. 4: the incident
where the tables have turned
Not but two days after the drunken episode, you walked up the stairs to find Tom, sitting outside his apartment like a lost puppy. He bounced his phone on one knee, the other keeping his forehead up as he scrolled through his phone. After a moment he locked it, turning his head to see you, dazed and confused.
“Y/N!” he exclaimed, his loud voice reminding you of Thursday night, and the deflated way he had yelled your name, saying that he was in love with you. You were starting to believe it; you could see his eyes light up whenever they found you, a small but genuine smile tilting his lips upward. For someone who had just lost a significant other, Tom seemed pretty much in one piece.
Maybe because you were the one seeing him.
Nevertheless, you raised an eyebrow in silent question, to which Tom sheepishly smiled. “I seem to have locked myself out of my own apartment,” he told you, standing up and shoving his hands in his pockets. He was well cleaned up, considering the last time you’d seen him he was smashed beyond compare.
Before you even had the thought of stopping, you blurted, “Doesn’t your girlfriend have a key?”
It was like kicking a puppy; a small, adorable little puppy that only wanted your attention for half a second. The mirth drained out of his face and his eyes quickly dropped to the floor. His hands swung aimlessly by his side. You wanted to take it back, say you were sorry or that you forgot, but you weren’t even supposed to know in the first place.
“Alice and I broke up,” he sighed, and all you could think was ‘So her name was Alice.’
You tried to morph your face into sympathy and surprise, but you weren’t sure how well you pulled it off. “Oh, shit Tom, I’m sorry,” you expressed, wanting to reach out and touch his shoulder, but withholding yourself. Pretending you didn’t know about his feelings for you was so difficult, and you weren’t sure why. It wasn’t like you to be flirty or drop hints, but for some reason that was all you wanted to do: wrap your arms around him, tell him he’d be fine, and remind him that you were next door if he needed you.
In some nice universe that would work, but this wasn’t time or place.
“My spare key is with Harrison, surprise surprise,” Tom joked, which you smiled at.
“You’re never going to see that key again,” you laughed, bringing back a sliver of a smile to the man’s face. He looked better with it, you thought, doing nothing for the butterflies in your stomach. Your laughter calmed down enough for you to shrug. “You can come stay at my place until he gets here, if you don’t have anything to do.”
His eyes widened, but he hid it by raising his left brow. “Are you sure? I don’t want to intrude or anything.”
“Considering it returning the favor. Besides, I’m always in your apartment. We need a change of scenery.” You unlocked your door, coming into your apartment with tense shoulders. Tom had never been in here before, and there was a reason for that. His presence in your apartment would gradually become less and less strange, making him just a part of your home than the couch or the curtains. You didn’t want him to be so familiar that it seemed like he belonged here, because he didn’t. He belonged in his nice white apartment, far away from whatever you had going on here.
There wasn’t much. You weren’t a minimalist, but you preferred less pillows and decorations than actual furniture. The colors were mostly neutral blues and greys, with red here or there. Along the walls were huge posters of cities you’d visited for work. Ashville, Slab City, Roswell, and other obscure towns were littered across your living room, and when you looked back you noticed Tom was staring at all of them.
“You’ve been to all these places?” he inquired, awe lacing his voice. You were shocked by his curiosity, considering he travelled all the time for his job. His face was fixed on the posters, before catching the little framed photos around the bookshelves. “Holy shit, is that you?”
He had the frame in his hand now, and judging from it, you were sure he was indulging himself in staring at a truly mortifying high school photo of yours. “Who are these people?” he pointed, and you grimaced.
“High school friends, if you couldn’t tell by our bad fashion choices,” you groaned, coming up beside him and studying the picture. You were in the middle, as you often were in group photos because everyone was taller than you. It didn’t particularly matter in this instance; you were squatting down, your hands clasped as if in prayer, staring down the camera with a smirk. Above you, four of your friends had lifted up the shortest girl in your group, perching her on their shoulders. It looked like a dysfunctional human pyramid.
“I don’t think I have a picture of me and my mates half as cool as this,” Tom remarked, and you couldn’t help but laugh.
“You think that’s cool? I think we were more crazy than cool,” you spoke wistfully, setting the picture back down. “I’m not even sure why I keep that around. It doesn’t really fit in with this whole thing,” you gestured wildly, pointing at the dozens of colorful photos. Tom’s eyes landed wherever your finger pointed, until the rested back on you.
“Which one of these is your favorite?” he asked, turning in a circle to view every landscape. You put a finger to your lips, eyeing each one carefully, until you landed on one filled with green and purple.
“I took this in Glasgow, about four years ago,” you stated, standing beside a quite large picture of a sprawling field of bluebells. “First time scouting overseas, and a studio needed pictures of old woods to use as concept art. I was with a senior photographer on this one, but he let me take the shots they eventually used.” You glanced up at the photo in reverence, before looking over to Tom.
His face expressed pure adoration, and you found that his eyes rested more so on you than the photo. He seemed to be in a trance, only snapped out of the daze a minute after you’d stopped talking. He tried to shake the grin off, but it was too late. So he went with it, smiling even wider.
“Wow. I’ve been to Scotland before, and I knew it was beautiful. But that?” he threw his hands down and you laughed at his gesture. “I’ve never seen anything like that before.”
“You just have to know where to look. I know I never would have found this place if David wasn’t so familiar with Glasgow,” you told him, heading into the kitchen for drinks. “Next time, take someone who knows what to look for.”
“Maybe I should take you.” It was supposed to be mumbled under his breath, just a wish he kept to himself, but he let his guard down. You heard him, freezing as you stuck your head into the fridge, thanking the heavens that you had a cover for your burning face. You wanted to turn around and tell him yes; absolutely, positively, one-hundred-percent were you on board with going anywhere with him. You wanted to joke that you’d pack your luggage right then and there, that between two seasoned travelers like you, there was sure to be a discount somewhere.
But all you could do was force down the thoughts, grabbing two cokes from the fridge before pressing them to your face. You turned to Tom and smiled, a restrained, glowing thing that startled him, for he hesitantly stepped towards you.
“Maybe you should. Glasgow is one of my favorite places. I’d be happy to show you around.” You hoped you didn’t come off as anything other than friendly, but knowing the situation you were both in, there was no telling his response.
Tom just blinked, his face like a deer in headlights. Suddenly his face was tinted in pick and he smiled, looking down at his shoes bashfully. “I don’t know when we’d ever do it,” he commented, rooting you two back in the reality, the place where you both had jobs to do and obligations to others. But it had been nice, dreaming of Scotland with Tom. Perhaps it would come true.
There was a calm silence that settled in between the conversation, which was ripped away when Tom’s cell rang. He picked it up with reluctance, before making a face at the id. “Haz you better be downstairs or else I’m hanging up.” There was a bit of yelling on the other side, Harrison’s voice distorted by the traffic outside. Tom listened for a moment more before nodded, cutting his eyes over to you.
“Yeah, you can just open yourself, you’re always there anyways,” he quipped, ending the line before sighing. “Sorry, that was Haz, he’s here with my key.” Every word he said sounded breathless, a string of words in an almost incomprehensible British accent and an apology mixed in somewhere. You smiled, before jumping up.
“Oh! Before I forget,” you babbled, reaching into a packed kitchen cabinet for something. You stood on the tips of your toes, reaching for a turned handle before it landed gracefully in your palm. You smiled, handing it over to the dumbfounded man over the counter.
“What’s this?” he asked, turning over the red and blue designed cup. “Is this for me?”
“Yeah! I told you I was going to get you a new mug, I didn’t say what it would look like though.” You bit your lip, wondering if a Spider-Man mug was really the way to go in this situation. In addition to playing the wen head, you knew he had an affinity for the character as well, hoping the combined coincidences would lead him to like it.
He pressed it into his palms, turning it over in the daintiest of ways. He clutched it tight, as though he might break it from just breathing on it. When he picked his head up, you noted the watery glimmer in his brown eyes, which he tried his hardest to blink back. There were so many small things about Tom that made your heart flutter, but you didn’t have time to study them all.
“Thank you,” his small voice took you from your thoughts. “That was really sweet of you. You didn’t have to do this.”
“I wanted to,” you relied firmly, placing a hand on his shoulder. “And I couldn’t live with myself if I never replaced it. Seriously, take it,” you told him, seeing as he was unwilling to leave with it. He stared at it a little while longer before he jolted, a buzzing sounding from his back pocket.
“Harrison’s here, I should, uh,” He stammered out, slowly taking some steps back. You nodded, giving him a slight wave and then headed back to the kitchen. You didn’t look up until you heard the door open, and then click shut, the air in your apartment much colder than it had been.
You stared around, wondering if you could find differences in your home now that Tom had been inside it. Your old theory was clearly correct, because your place had never felt so lonely and empty since you’d moved in. With a frown, you stared at the picture of Glasgow, wondering if in some other time and place, it was taken by you and Tom.
No.5: the incident where everything becomes clear
You actually burst into his apartment, a loud banging noise that sounds like it belongs in a movie. You’re too dramatic, and for reasons only you can understand.
Two heads turn, almost in sync. Blue eyes stare your form up and down, a quirk in his brows, while Tom just screams “Y/N!” It’s more of an exclamation that a question, which prompts Harrison to ask the obvious.
“What are you doing?” It’s so posh coming from him, the accent highlighting the annoyance in his voice. Or maybe it’s confusion, because he seems baffled not only by your presence, but by your urgency.
Tom doesn’t seem to mind. He’s got wide, shining eyes, and a posture that’s halfway out of the chair he was sitting in. He crosses the length between you two in an instant, throwing you off for a second before you regained proper footing.
“What’s wrong?” He questioned, staring you down with those concerned brown hues of his. You wanted to take his face in your hands, and reveal your purpose for being here in the first place.
You were out of breath, from both being so close to him, and from running up three flights of stairs. After getting started on a scouting job earlier this week, you requested half the day off to start finalizing your travel plans. Within the next week you’d be flying into Tokyo and Hong Kong for a few days with Shanghai as a backup plan in case you didn’t get the shots you wanted.
You had been so psyched to start packing and start sharing about your trip, when you came across a moving truck in front of your complex. And lo and behold, you caught the sight of Alice, her arms full of those yellow throw pillows you had seen in his apartment all those weeks ago. Her blue eyes scanned the street until they came to rest on you, shouldering a hand bag that probably cost less than her foundation.
Her eyes turned to steel, lips curved in the most menacing grimace you’d ever seen. Her eyes appeared watery as you came closer, the grimace turning into a full-blown snarl the longer you stayed in her vicinity.
You practcally ran away, heart pounding out of fear. It wasn’t that Alice was mean or nasty towards you; it was that you could understand why she didn’t like you. You didn’t know the specifics of their breakup, but if you could guess, you figured Tom’s affection towards you might have played a factor in it.
The guilt burned your chest, but there was something else there you didn’t understand, something that led you to Tom’s unlocked door. In the awkward silence between you two, you wondered why it was unlocked, and why he didn’t seem to question why you were here. The longer he stared at you, the more your fingers itched, and the more you yearned to touch him.
So you pulled him out of the apartment, his feet tripping over the threshold as the door closed behind him. You caught a glimpse of Harrison’s face, blue eyes shining with mirth before he winked, clicking it shut. Tom turned his head to look back, but you grabbed his cheeks, making him face you.
He opened his mouth to ask something, but the question was caught it his throat. Your lips were suddenly on his, and he shifted closer to you, like it was an instinct. Like he got kissed by breathless girls outside his apartment on a daily basis.
His arms wrapped around your waist, before coiling tightly, his nails digging into your jacket. Your hands left his cheeks, instead falling to the nape of his neck, where you brushed small curls of hair with your knuckles. Everything about kissing Tom felt like fitting into a jigsaw puzzle; you knew exactly where everything went. From your hands to your chest to your lips, every part of you felt in place.
Tom eyes opened as he pulled back, gazing at you like he would a star in the sky. “Why did you do that?” His nearly inaudible voice was shaky, his hands running up and down your sides. He tried to still himself, but you could feel the skittish energy he was trying hard to contain.
You wound your arms around his neck, pressing yourself closer to him. “I don’t actually know,” you told him seriously, a smile in your lips.
He tried to roll his eyes, but he too was smiling at you. “You just did it, because? Just because you could?”
“Because I’ve wanted to for a long time. Because you accidently said last Thursday that you were in love with me. And because I’m in love with you too.”
Tom’s arms dropped and he balked, watching you with a gaping mouth. “You heard that? You heard me say that?” he reiterated, looking you in the eye. When you nodded he groaned, placing his head in his hands. He refused to look at you when you coaxed him out of his shame.
“I can’t believe you knew that,” he muttered, his face turning redder by the second. You tiptoed up and kissed the crown of his head, causing him to peek at you through his fingers.
“I’m sorry you’re embarrassed, but if I didn’t know I’d never have the guts to kiss you,” you compromised, pulling his hands away from his face. “C’mon, this situation isn’t all bad.”
“It’s not bad at all, really,” he sighed, a content smile gracing his lips. “I mean, you did say you were in love with me too, right?”
“Do kisses not mean anything to you Brits? Is that just like, a thing you guys do?” You poked fun at him, earning another small peck on your lips to shut you up. You smiled and laughed, making it messy and causing his lips to end up short squish against your cheek. He rolled with it though, smothering your face with tiny little pecks, squeezing you tight in his arms.
From somewhere in the apartment, Harrison screamed “Finally!”