Balancing on a knife's edge...it can't last forever.
“What did she call them? Emo or something?” Gerard asked.
“No, it was before the time of emo. Pathetic? Pitiful? Angsty and adolescent and juvenile and whiny and—“
“Shut up Mikey!” Frank had shouted. “She said they were deeply emotional, but they didn’t appeal to her. Jesus.” He’d muttered.
Returning to Gerard’s house—it was still Gerard’s house, she couldn’t yet call it her own though she was starting to think it wouldn’t be so bad if she did—she’d been exhausted and grinning from ear to ear and sticky because Frank, darling little scamp that he is, had thrown food at her and she’d returned fire with gusto. So much, actually, that she’d missed Frank and hit Donna, who was seated next to him (Presumably to keep an eye on him). Jumping in to defend his mother, Mikey had lobbed a dinner roll and Gerard had returned the sentiment with corn. She’d later questioned why and he’d just shrugged.
“I had to defend my woman,” he’d said. She thought it was damn sweet of him, and so, being herself, resented it. She could take care of herself. Anyway, she’d been mortified and sure she’d never be asked back until Donna had pitched a piece of lasagna at Ray and winked at Egan. They’d tag-teamed after that, along with Gerard, and pretty much dominated with the exception of a few casualties. After a delicious but fairly acidic sauce had hit a few eyes, a truce was called and Gerard had proclaimed they needed to get going. Thanking Donna for her hospitality, punching Frank whenever she could get a jab in and hugging all the rest, she’d departed with Gerard and spent the car ride back in very content silence. Half way through, Gerard had grabbed her hand. His was a little sweaty and he stared straight ahead when she glanced at him from the corner of her eye. She’d squeezed his hand once, and he’d squeezed back, and she’d felt the bottom of her stomach fall and melt all at once, and in the most delicious way. It was paradise.
And as much as she hated to ruin it, she had a tiny suspicion that it couldn’t remain that way.
“Home.” Gerard sighed, stretching after closing the door. Egan stopped and took a moment to look around the entranceway. It seemed…realer to her. Like it was actually there, instead of just something she was seeing and not noticing, like it had been before. She wasn’t sure why. Maybe it was the gravity of her situation with Gerard. The reality of it. She’d met his family and friends. That made it quantifiable. That made it count.
He thought she counted.
And it felt so good. It was so nice to get lost in the wash of soft golden happiness that came with things going right.
Their relationship was—God help her—comfortable. And nice. Sweet. Stable and warm. She had friends. Hell, she was friends with his friends. They all liked each other and now it looked like they’d be hanging out in the future (There were goddamn movie plans). The house she lived in was beautiful and the room she slept in was just as lovely. But it had a past.
Kinda like her.
This life she had going now was an episode of the Cosby show minus the annoying kids running around with adolescent woes. It was a Christmas card. And she saw herself sort of like the blot of ink in the middle of an otherwise cheery greeting. The goddamn square peg in the round hole. It didn’t fit right.
He was sweet . He made her happy.
He might even stick around, she thought, watching Gerard ramble off towards the kitchen. She trailed behind, thinking.
She, on the other hand, had already made it clear she would run if need be. And that she didn’t really need him, or anybody. Yes, she’d been a little darling for a while, but how long before the veneer cracked? Things that are too good to be true are just that.
Donna and Frank and Mikey and Ray and Bob were all good people. And Gerard, most of all of them, was really good. Pure and simple, the boy had a golden heart. But she…she was someone different. While it was true none of them were up for sainthood, she was a full blown sinner. She just couldn’t help but wonder…was it worth it, trying to make it work? The odds were stacked, and not in her favor.
Was she enough to make it all fit?
A pungent smell made her look around. She was standing before the marble island in the kitchen, not quite clear on how she got there. Gerard was brewing some coffee and she had walked right into the thick of the aromatic cloud.
“You know,” she voiced from her position a few feet away, “You drink that, you’ll never sleep.”
“I never do anyway,” he mumbled absently, smiling with the left corner of his mouth but staring intently at the slowly percolating coffee. He would not be distracted.
“I think I know why,” Egan fairly purred, an idea blossoming in her mind. “Come with me. I want to do something.”
“In a minute. Wait for the coffee.”
“Gerard…come on. Now. Please?” she slid up beside him and, seating herself on the counter next to the coffee maker, nuzzled her face in his neck. “I can make it worth it if you do,” she murmured in his ear. She felt him shiver and smiled. She felt powerful.
“Stop trying to distract me from salvation you damn temptress,” He said after gathering his wits. It was a joke, but the mark hit close to home. Maybe he saw it too, she thought, and knew then that she had to get a hold of him while she could. She had to make him see her as worth it.
“Get your coffee, then come find me,” she said softly, sliding off the counter. She made sure he saw she was heading upstairs. She had contingency plans. She would make this work; it was too good to let go. And a good way to make something stick with a man was to get stuck.
She wouldn’t be sleeping in the Almost-Ways room tonight.
Author's Note: Hi y'all! If any of you know who I am, I'm back for a little bitty bit. Like a one chapter long bit. And If you don't know me, here's the lowdown: Most of this was written and posted within, like, two, maybe three weeks. This chapter and the last one are fairly new and came long after the rest. I've turned fickle, I know. I can almost hear "Your Ceatin' Heart". Anyway, read and rate and review and we'll be BFFL's.
And P.S. My reviewers said it was getting too cute and comfortable, not enough drama. Well, dammit, I'm trying to make some, so have patience por favor.
P.P.S. This chapter is for shysmile (If she even reads anymore) just because she's like the greatest reader ever. Period. Fer rill this time.