Author's Note: Oh, if we want to be technical, the idea comes from me listening to Konstantine by Something Corporate one too many times. But in the way that was like, "hey let's take two kids and put them in a relationship where they'll get so fucked up they won't know which way is up when they're done with each other", and the way that the title is stolen out of the song as well, and not in the way that this is Andrew McMahon and Krystal/Konstantine living out their ten minute song. If you want that particular brand of wonderfulness, go read Forgotten Sheet Music by Selective Inspiration.
Dedications: As always, this is to Katie. Since she was the one that pushed me to write this. And to Ashley, who pushed me to post it.
He met her at piano lessons. It
was a simple thing that led to not-so-simple events. The first impression
Andrew Stanton had of Remington Everly DuGrey was that of her being unapproachable.
Then her dark blue eyes met his, and he saw something a little broken in her, a
little lost. A little like himself. So he became lost too, in that moment- in
It was easier to approach her once this connection was made. Maybe it was just him, or maybe he had a feeling it was just one of those once in a lifetime things that you had to grab onto before they disappeared into a growing pile of passing regrets that later builds your midlife crisis.
It was hard to discern her age, from far away or up close. She carried an air that she was older, wiser and knew a hell of a lot more than you did. But then there was a frailty in her pale blonde hair, and the shape of her face. She could have been anywhere from the age of fourteen to the age of thirty.
"Hey," she said as he sat down beside her on the bench outside of the room.
"Hi," he felt his own response was much lamer, but really what should he expect from himself. The white halls with their marble floors weren't exactly his element. In fact, he doubted he'd be allowed to pass the building if it weren't for the fact that his mother taught the piano. It was a school specifically for teaching kids to play piano. And he got lessons free here and his mother felt that if he could get the best, why not embrace it? Not to mention the fondest feelings his father had ever expressed towards the piano was when he called it a sissy racket of useless noise. Something his son shouldn't be playing.
Obviously, she felt the same way, because the conversation came to a halt there. He couldn't think of anything else to say other than something stupid like, 'taking a lesson'? Or 'so you play piano'? Both of which had such obvious answers that if he asked them, he might physically smack himself in the head afterwards.
Her gaze flickered over to him briefly, before it focused on the door across from them. Several more moments passed. Andrew could hear the ticking of the clock above. He looked up. It was 11:11AM. The clock ticked. 11:12AM. Whatever had brought him to sit next to her had turned on him and ran away. Abandoning him with absolutely no intelligent thought.
Her blue eyes were on him again, and her breath halted. "Are you Ms. Stanton's son?"
Okay, not exactly the introduction he wanted. But it would have to do. "Yes."
"Andrew." Not Andy, not Drew. Just plain Andrew.
"Who are you?" The question was just kind of blurted out. But she wasn't exactly the easiest conversationalist in the world at present.
"Remy." And that was it. Just one name. One that was probably just a nickname too. Her long blonde hair brushed his shoulder as she leaned towards him. In a whispered voice, she asked, "Do you want to go somewhere?"
His grey-blue eyes met her startling clear blue ones. "Where?"
She shrugged elegantly as she stood up and turned her head to look at him. "Anywhere that's not here."
Right then, that sounded like a very good place to be.
Andrew ended up in Remy's Sangria-colored Mercedes convertible. She was a new driver. He'd bet all his money (little that he had) on it. She didn't panic or freak out; in fact she remained very calm. However, some of her movements were robotic and practiced, like most who just got off a permit do. Before they realize that they don't have to impress some overworked DMV employee, and all they have to do is remember enough of the rules so the cops won't pull them over. The fact she had a license and a car put her at least at the age of 16 or older. Andrew could probably spend hours taking little snippets of information like that and try to piece together the puzzle of Remy. But he doubted it would get him anywhere.
She didn't listen to bands he would expect of someone of her status or gender. The CD was obviously a mix, but so far he had recognized Bad Religion, Something Corporate, Taking Back Sunday, and Days Away. Andrew had stolen a peak at the other CDs scattered about in the car. Some more unexpected bands: Dead Kennedys, Brand New and Finch. He looked over at her. Blonde hair whipping in the wind, blue eyes hidden by Gucci sunglasses. Ever the mystery. Andrew wasn't sure why he expected a person he met to be more. Just that he wanted her to be.
Remy pulled into the driveway of one of the largest houses he had ever seen, and she pulled in next to a legion of cars that were similar to hers in class and price. She got out wordlessly and he followed. She had a bewitching presence, and he was so under her spell he would have followed her anywhere.
She looked behind to see if he was still following her. And then she finished the walk up to the doorway, and the door opened before either of them could knock.
A tall guy, with disheveled dark hair stood there. "Remington. So glad to see you could grace us so early."
So Andrew had been right, it was a nickname.
Remy grabbed his hand and pushed past the guy. "Whatever, Makon. Are you serving?"
The guy, Makon, arched an eyebrow. "Always. What about your friend?"
It wasn't even noon yet, but Remy answered for him. "Sure."
Makon disappeared, only to return a moment later with a strawberry-flavored vodka, that he handed to Remy, and a hard lemonade he gave to Andrew. "I'd say enjoy the party. But you always do, don't you Rem?"
Remy just looked at him, raised her bottle, took a sip and shrugged her shoulders. Then walked deeper into the house. Andrew followed her. There was a party going on. At noon.
Remy turned around and walked backwards, "That was Mason Makon. It's his parents place. They leave for like these three-day weekends, and he hosts parties for all three days. Never ending."
"Except of course, when the three days are up."
Either Remy didn't get his humor, or she just chose to ignore it. Most likely the latter. "Come this way."
She led him to a smaller room, which Andrew could only guess was a living room or drawing room. Whatever the wealthy was calling it these days. There were only a few other people inhabiting the room, and he took a seat in the chair furthest away from everyone else. It had been a stupid idea to come here.
Remy finished off her vodka and slid onto the arm of his chair. Maybe not such a stupid idea after all.
When Andrew had gone to practice the piano at the school where his mother taught that instrument, he hadn't planned on ending up at a party, with liquor in his system, and a girl he had just met on his lap. All before one in the afternoon. But however these things happened…and once they had happened no one seemed to remember how it had occurred. Remington DuGrey was just that type of girl.
She wasn't drunk. Or at least, he didn't think so. She had only drunk one minibottle of flavored vodka. She was coherent, and excluding the rather odd behavior, or at least to him, of sliding into a guy's lap she barely knew and kissing him, seemed normal.
It wasn't normal. At least not for him. And while he enjoyed obvious aspects of it, he wasn't sure that he all liked it. It may have been the strange settings he was in, or the numerous videos and lectures he had received about parties like this and girls like that. But it was the obvious aspects of enjoyment that kept distracting him from his discomfort with this situation.
It was a random passerby's slightly slurred voice that managed to puncture through the fog that was his brain at that moment. "See, DuGrey knows how to party."
There was an unkind cackle from his female companion, "DuGreys always know how to party."
It was as much as Makon had implied earlier when he had greeted them at the door, and it left him with a feeling of being used. Like he wasn't more than one of many. He wasn't special, and neither was this girl. But then she dragged her lips off his, slid off his lap and offered her hand while looking at him through hooded eyes, and he knew that everyone else in this room must be wrong.
The whole encounter had been so surreal that Andrew believed that the memory would soon fade into fantasy. A dream so vivid that you swore it may have happened, but didn't believe that it truly had. But it was scary, and dreams never scared you. Because they always had the same ending, with you waking up to the comforting sight of a nightlight that illuminates safety back into your world. So Andrew wasn't sure whether or not to be surprised when he ran into Remington DuGrey outside of Grand Suite Piano Academy the next day.
"Hey." If anything, she seemed more confident then the day before, which left him feeling decidedly less confident.
But at least he managed to croak out a, "Hey."
She leaned against the cool glass door, and tilted her head towards the outside. "Where are you going?"
Well that was certainly unexpected. After she dropped him off last night at the academy, it seemed unlikely the two would ever cross paths again. But that was probably stupid of him considering they both took lessons at the same place. "Uh, home?"
Remy gave him an amused smile, as if she had suddenly turned ages older than him and he was just a small boy holding the gift of an apple up at her. "Would you like to take a detour to a restaurant instead?"
She licked her lips. "Anywhere you want."
Andrew doubted that where he liked to eat even entered into her radar, but it was time for him to stop being intimidated by someone who was likely younger then him. After all, she was just a girl. Right? So maybe it was that thought that empowered him to hold his hand out to her and say, "Okay."
Remy looked at his hand, her blue eyes flickered up at him and then she took it.
Huh. Maybe this wouldn't turn out the way he thought after all.
There was a Chinese restaurant that Andrew's older half-brother would bring him and their younger sister to whenever he would come home from the army. It wasn't the fanciest place, or even the best food in town, but it was…comfortable. And the only place he could think of when left with the decision of where to eat. It wasn't exactly a restaurant that someone of Remington DuGrey's status would even consider passing by. But so far the only reaction she had given to it was the slight scrunching of her nose when they had gotten out of his car.
She hadn't said much of anything since asking him if he wanted to go out to eat except to ask for some Green tea. Which had been served, along with orders taken.
"Do you like tea?" Well, then. He just had to go and do it. Ask the stupid question with the all too obvious answer.
"My mother lives off it," Remy answered, looking down into her cup.
Andrew was beginning to notice that Remy seemed to get away with answering questions without ever giving anything away about herself. "Does that mean you like it or you just drink it out of habit then?"
She looked up at him, somewhat startled and not even bothering to hide it from him. "I…like it."
"My mother's against caffeine," it was another lame thing to say. Especially since his mother was also against underage drinking and well…that hadn't stopped him the day before. Not to mention that he was eighteen and really shouldn't…actually, he shouldn't over think every little thing.
But, to his surprise, Remy's lips curled into a little half smile and she said, "My mother's against coffee."
"But not caffeine?"
"No," her teeth bit into her lower lip. "It's just that liking coffee would make her human."
It was an odd comment for her to make but intriguing all the same. But so far he hadn't found anything about Remy that wasn't intriguing. "What about your father?"
"Oh," her hand came up and tugged on a strand of her long, blonde hair. "That's questionable."
"So questionable that I'll never know the answer." Her eyes didn't meet his.
Well, what did you say to that? "So no male role model? Ever."
Remy looked at him, though he suspected it was more out of surprise at the question than anything else. "Not exactly. I mean, I have my grandfather… and my stepfather."
"How long has your mother been married?" Andrew looked up as the waitress set their food down in front of them.
Remy waited until after she had taken a bite of her rice before answering. "Well she's not…married, yet. But the wedding is being planned. But he may as well be my stepfather."
"So you like him?"
She snorted, "Dallie? I've liked him more than Lola on many occasions."
Andrew twirled his food with his chopsticks. "And Lola's your mom?"
Remy nodded, "Yeah."
Lola…DuGrey. The name sounded vaguely familiar, as if he had read it before. Which he most likely had. However, he couldn't remember in what context, and he had a feeling that a lot could be explained about Remy through her mother. "Huh."
Apparently every once and awhile Andrew had a good idea, because after Chinese, Remy had expressed a desire for ice cream. And he wasn't a completely oblivious blockhead, so he had picked up on the hint and had driven them to the local Tastee-Freeze, where they were currently in his car, eating ice cream cones. Remy had become rather chatty when trying to get the conversation off of her parents. Then she had made herself right at home in his car, pulling back her seat, and propping her feet up on his dashboard, while the waitress had taken their order.
Currently, she was licking the rest of the rainbow sprinkles off of her vanilla soft serve and fiddling with his CDs. She wasn't one to sit still.
"Do you have any siblings?" Remy leaned back in her seat now satisfied with her disk selection. She had started this thing, where the conversation kept focusing solely on him. He wasn't a big fan of this.
"Two," he took out a bite from his own sugar cone before finishing. "An older brother from my father's first marriage, and a younger sister from my parent's."
Her eyes twinkled as she asked the next question. "What are their names?"
"Hayden is my older brother. And Madison is my sister." Both could be rather annoying.
"How did you end up as an Andrew?" Remy licked her melting ice cream off the cone.
"How did you end up a Remington?" Andrew countered, using the same trick she had been using for their conversations.
Remy shrugged, "My mother was on a lot of those labor pain killing drugs at the time, and there was no one there to talk her out of it."
"My mother liked the name, so she convinced my father to like the name as well." He finished off the rest of his cone and ice cream. "How did you end up with the nickname? Remy?"
She tossed the rest of her ice cream out the window, apparently losing interest in it. "My mother is a big fan of nicknames."
"Mine isn't." All three of the Stanton children went by their full names.
"I'm rather indifferent to nicknames…" Remy pushed the hair out of her face. "Drew." She winked.
He rolled his eyes and leaned back into his seat. "Why not Andy?"
"Ew," she shook her head and scrunched her nose in disgust. "No."
Her reaction was just so adorable that Andrew couldn't help but lean over and kiss her. The air of age came back around her as she was not startled by the movement, but rather took control of the kiss the moment his lips touched hers.
The first step of taking someone, or even something, off of its pedestal was to start noticing imperfections. If this were a movie, he could easily slide over to her seat and they'd be some place more romantic than outside of an ice cream stand. But reality was, there was a stick shift in between them, and an ice cream stand outside the door. And Remy wasn't perfect. She got a little sloppy in her kissing, and she almost kicked his windshield out. And he wasn't perfect either. He, too, got a little sloppy in his kissing, and had hit the edge of his pelvis on the stick, which had sent shards of pain down him for a few brief moments.
Remy laughed against his mouth, and he drew away. "Let's go."
To Be Continued…