A/N: You know I'm always sorry about my uselessness. Short summary because I'm a slow-updating douche: Jesse and her band of merry boy-men graduate, they party it up at McDern's. Drunk Jesse sees Sapphire arrive at the party and has drunk 'words' with her. Jesse loses Seth, has a deep (as deep as drunken conversations go, I've had a few philosophical conversations where a bad combination of vodka/whiskey/jager was involved and these conversations can be extremely deep, I think- I'm going to be honest I don't really remember) conversation with Carlo before going in search of Seth. After an uncertain amount of time has elapsed Jesse sees Sapphire exiting a room and in Jesse fashion goes to see who's behind door number slut.
Of Scents and Sense.
That sound I heard, over the muffled music and Seth's deep breathing as he slept was the beating of my heart. Strange, don't you think? Just over a year, maybe more, or so ago Seth was Sapphire's… until I decided I wanted her. Granted she planted the idea in my head (yes I stand by it) I could have told her to back off. I could have said, 'you're my best friend's girl, what the actual fuck?' But I didn't and it was a dick move, hooking up with his girlfriend behind his back. And I was supposed to be his best friend.
"I'm sorry." I murmured, aware of the fact that tears, pesky things, had gathered at the base of my eyes readying themselves for a journey down my face. Sniffing slightly I tried to swipe them away with the back of my hand. "But if I hadn't broken you guys up, would you still be with her today?" I asked, knowing he couldn't hear a damn thing I was saying. I inclined my head to the side as I moved closer to his face, noticing lipstick on the corner of his lips. My eyes narrowed, the beating of my heart seeming to pound in my ears now, and I felt my blood rushing to my face. "What was she doing in here with you?" I asked, once again not expecting an answer.
"She was trying to get laid." I jumped, whirling around as I did so, not even thinking as I grabbed a glass that was on the floor by the bed.
Jeremy stood just beyond a door I had not seen on my way in, in what looked to be a bathroom. "Okay, dude. What the fuck are you doing in a bathroom looking into rooms, is this some voyeuristic thing you're into now or-" I tried to come off sounding witty and upbeat, but my voice was still to raw and it came with an added shake to it. I wanted to shoot myself in the face.
He shook his head patronizingly, "This is an adjoining bathroom, and I was in the room next door hiding from a girl who once tried to bite my dick off-"
"Whoa! WAY too much information!" I interrupted, Jeremy flashed his pearly whites sheepishly and for once the pity I'd been feeling for him was replaced by a tentative amity. He looked better too, I don't know whether it was the dapper suit, or the burning of his parents' possessions, but Jeremy looked like he was going to be all right. He was a far cry off the weirdo who had opened the door earlier this evening, or the emaciated being that slunk around school for the past few weeks. I stopped, what the hell I doing evaluating Jeremy's wellbeing when Seth was passed out on the bed, in the room that Sapphire just walked out of? Focus brain! "What are you doing here?"
Jeremy continued to grin awkwardly, "Sorry, I needed to take a leak so I came to the bathroom and then I heard Sapphire."
"And decided you wanted to get your perd- perrd- fuck!" I was finding it difficult to form the correct formation with my lips and teeth to make the V sound. "Perb on?" I prompted, wanting to cut the very words from my tongue, "Did you hear her moaning, or laughing- or slutting? Were they laughing about how I deserved this because of how I fucked everything up?" I was starting to talk faster, and with each word that came out, my anger once again began to multiply in droves. "Did you hear him?!" I pointed back without looking; I stopped to wonder if Jeremy and I were whispering. Because I felt like I was yelling, but it didn't seem to be loud enough to wake Seth up. Truth be told, in a drunken stupor not even the apocalypse could wake him up.
I looked back to see if Seth had stirred, nothing. See? "Uh…no?" Jeremy spoke slowly, as though he were speaking to a wild animal that could attack at any moment. Although why anyone would try reasoning with a wild animal that could maul you to death or tear you to pieces was beyond me. "Well yeah but not what you think. I heard her talking while I was washing my hands and I was about to leave when I heard Seth, telling her to leave him alone." I stood up out of the attack stance I hadn't realized I had worked myself into.
I dropped my arms to my side, still holding onto the wineglass I had picked up, I indicated for him to go on with a nod. "I could see into the room using the mirror, and I'll admit she was all over him." Rage began to bubble up; I wasn't sure just how drunk I still was. I know sometimes you think you're sober, but mostly you've just convinced drunken gullible self into believing so, because that alcohol stays in your body well into the next day.
Jeremy probably noticed the way my lips pursed, or more importantly the way the glass I held shattered under my grip, because he gasped, before saying, "stop that!" I didn't even notice the pain, "Jesse!" Jeremy dashed into the bathroom and came back with a towel. By the time he got back my blood had seeped into the rug, as I tried to collect the pieces of glass from the floor with my good hand. The fact that the blood was running pretty freely wasn't registering with me.
"Jesse leave that, here-" He grabbed my hand in the towel, leading me to the bathroom where the lights were brighter, the white towel seemed almost soaked through with my blood. I blinked at the sight as Jeremy continued to talk to me, "We need to patch this up, alcohol thins your blood and so you're bleeding profusely as a result."
I shook my head slightly, "Yo Dern that was some smart words that fell out of your mouth." My words slurred, I guess I wasn't as sober as my anger made me think I was. He sat me down on the edge of the bathtub, cradling my hand in the bloodied towel. He seemed concentrated on my hand, as though he didn't even hear what I had said. Holding my hand over the sink, to get rid of some excess blood before proceeding to pick out pieces of glass that were still embedded in my skin, Jeremy asked if it hurt. I smiled toothily and shook my head.
It was like watching a medical show on TV, only much more realistic because it was almost like I could feel the pain, I say almost because I couldn't feel a thing. Jeremy muttered things as he placed another towel on my hand and gently squeezed. I still felt no pain; the alcohol not only thinned my blood but it also made me feel invincible, which probably wasn't a good thing. "I have to stop the bleeding before I can clean out your cuts," Jeremy explained, his mouth was set in a thin line as he patted the cuts on my hand before examining them closer.
"Did you do first aid or something?" I pretty garbled out, Jeremy nodded I don't know if it was in understanding of what I asked or for the sake of nodding.
"Yeah, I thought it'd come in handy one day." The things you find out about former enemies when they're tending to cuts inflicted whilst inebriated, eh?
A thought occurred to me, "Hey, McDern. Jeremy, hey. Dern. Hey." I breathed in and out trying to form my words with my mouth, "When- what are you doing after, you know, high school?" Wait wasn't high school already finished? Yes, this was a graduation party. I shook my head at myself.
Jeremy let out a whoosh of air that I felt on my hand, which he was still looking at closely. "Well, I haven't even told my parents this but I've been accepted into Yale." Say whaaaaat?
"Dude, like whoa congraj- congrajal- hey I thought you wanted to go to LA and buy acting, or modeling or yodeling. Why don't your parents know?"
"They don't take much interest in my life." Jeremy said, I mumbled something about always thinking he was a mummy's boy, Jeremy chuckle derisively, "We know pretty much nothing about each other despite how long we've been in school together."
"I always knew you were a dick." I said, before shaking my head, "No, thought- I always thought it was you that was a dick, but we're both dicks aren't we?" He had some cotton balls and a bottle of something that he'd dabbed the cotton balls in and was gently wiping the visible cuts on my hand with, he stopped and looked at me. For a minute he stopped doing what he was doing and crouched in front of me. I made a weird face. "You stopped fixing it." I shook my cut up hand at him.
"Jesse," Whoa, he sounded serious. I tried to focus. "I've been a right asshole to you. I don't have any excuses," I squinted, hoping it would help me concentrate on his words better, "but I mean- I've said I'm sorry but I don't think it's enough. I mean, that night if Archer wasn't there-" Oh. I shook my head not wanting to talk about or listen to him talk about it. "No, let me just- apologise or something, I was wasted that night but it's still no excuse, and fuck… I'm sorry okay?" My nose twitched, forgetting about the hand, mangled because of rage and a wineglass, I tried to scratch my nose. Jeremy shook his head and grabbed my hand so he could keep swabbing at it with cotton balls mumbling about how they were out of antibacterial wipes.
"Issokay." I said, in response to the wipes, but he thought I was talking about his apology.
"It really isn't, it's like I've had this vendetta against you since you set foot at Borric, I was a dick and I don't know. I just feel like I kind of deserve what I got, and it sorta made me reevaluate my life choices."
"I'm really drunk Jeremy, I don't think I'll remember your words but- I'm sorry too. I could have just gotten the boys to beat you within an inch of your life but I took it too far." I squeezed his hand with my unharmed one, his blue eyes looking at me as though for the first time. He leaned in for what I assumed (correctly) was a kiss, but before his lips touched mine I leaned back and in my drunken state I miscalculated how hard my slap would be. "Ow!"
"What are you doing?!" I half shouted, and he stared at me a probably processing the fact that he'd just gotten slapped.
He stuttered for a bit, "Th-That wasn't a moment?" I burst out laughing, his cheek started turning pink, my hand imprint reminding me of the Hollywood Boulevard Walk of Fame.
"Not that kind of moment! I'm in love with that asshole lying on the bed. The nerve Jeremy." I watched him bandage my hand and could just make out his mutterings.
"I thought you were going to say you were gay."
I nodded. "And that."
"But-" I hushed him.
"Don't question me, just patch me up McDern."
Jeremy finished bandaging up my hand and stood a somewhat sheepish expression on his face. "Sorry about that… again." I shook my head at him, but I couldn't help but grin, because for a moment I had forgotten why Jeremy had needed to patch my hand up, the reason I had gotten so mad and Hulked out on a wineglass. I was examining his handiwork as we left the bathroom.
"Don't worry about it, water under-" I looked up and shut up as I saw Seth was sitting up on the bed, a hand in his hair as if massaging his head, "Des?" I stopped beside Jeremy who, I saw, had some blood on his shirt from of my hand. Seth's vague expression turning unfriendly, "McTurd?"
I rallied to Jeremy's defense; "It's McDern to you Seth Adonis Hobson." I snapped, well as best as anyone who's starting to feel a slight paining in his or her hand could. Oh no, the magical properties of alcohol were beginning to wane.
"What the fuck? What happened to your hand!" Seth jumped off the bed and stalked forward, and even in my angry avoiding state, I appreciated the way he filled out his white shirt and was contrasted nicely against his skin tone, I moved behind Jeremy. Poor bastard, stuck in the middle of this and not by choice either.
I could sense him trying to inch away, "Um- maybe I should-" he started but I grabbed at his shirt with both hands, a sharp pain in my right hand shot up my nerve endings. Tears rose unbidden as I whimpered, managing to rasp out.
"No, Dern, stay."
"Jess?" Seth's voice was uncertain, peaking our from beside Jeremy I could see Seth's glare at Jeremy who once again tried to escape.
I squeezed Jeremy's shirt, using the pain as a deterrent to giving in to Seth's grey eyes that caught mine turning from hostile to questioning. I don't even know why I didn't want to be alone Seth right now, I just didn't. I think it was something Jeremy said about reevaluating his choices. Jesus, when did I start taking life advice (unbidden) from Jeremy McDern? I really needed Simon, and not just for his sage advice. I could really go for ribeye steak, medium rare.
"I really think you should stop that, your cuts could start bleeding again." Jeremy grabbed my wounded hand and stepped aside, turning to face me. "Also, this shit is not my scene. I've got bitches to-"
"Too much information!" I interrupted,
"Get back to." Jeremy finished, he stole a glance back at Seth before turning back and whispering, "I don't wanna get beat up in my own house at my own party, and I've already told you nothing happened between them." I glowered as he, in a louder voice, warned me not to drink any more alcohol or irritate the wounds before practically running out of the room. Coward.
I looked down at my bandaged hand, before Seth's hands came into view. Bigger and stronger than mine but still extremely gentle as he took my hand into both of his. "What happened, Des?" He murmured, I opened my mouth to yell obscenities, just because it was something I was used to doing.
"I lost you." I said instead, finally looking up. His hair was a mess, the dark soft mass falling over his forehead. I reached up with my good hand pushing his hair to the side. He moved closer, his hands warm against mine spreading out from my hands to the rest of my body. Jesus, this wasn't fair, the way he made me feel was so unfair.
Seth leaned down towards me, his hand coming up to lightly touch my cheek. "I don't think you could ever lose me Des, even if you tried." The humour intended lost as he took my injured hand and wrapped it around his neck, before sliding his arm around my lower back pulling me towards him. He smelled faintly of some indistinguishable cologne, the party, whiskey and a combination of things that made Seth Seth. And then there was the faint scent of something else. The familiar foreign smell bothered me, but I could feel my heart practically trying to claw its way out at his slightest touch and I tilted my head up, wanting him. His half-smirk that I always matched with my own peeked out at me and the heat caused by our breaths intermingling reminded me that our lips hadn't yet touched. The feeling was excruciating but excuse the pun, hot. It felt like forever, this proverbial penny in the air, the static position we'd been standing in and with both my hands around his neck I tightened my grip, bringing his face closer to mine. Just as our lips touched, however, the penny dropped.
My lips brushed against his as I muttered, "Sapphire's perfume." Seth's grey eyes, silvery in their depth went from desire to slight confusion as I began pulling away.
"That smell, it's Sapphire's perfume." I said firmly, more as a way to confirm this fact to myself than to point it out to him.
His arms were firmly around my waist and I could feel the warmth of his hard stomach against mine, I pushed back so that there was space between us. "Jesse-" he didn't go on, just looked at me, hurt.
"You smell like her." I reiterated,
"I told her to fuck off," He finally said, "I came in here looking for you, instead I saw a bed and decided to have a rest." My lips quirked up involuntarily and Seth grinned. "Yeah, having a rest at a party, sounds like something yiayia would say."
I raised an eyebrow, "Yeah? What's your gran doing at a high school rager?" I asked snarkily, trying to maintain some modicum of emotional distance by refusing to laugh at his joke.
Seth only smiled as if sharing a secret, "The usual Des, drugs, sex-" I visibly shuddered at the thought of anyone's grandparents getting their groove on. He frowned, "Jess, you've got to believe me."
"Oh I do, the stories your gran's told me about her past were pretty wild."
It was Seth's turn to look unimpressed. "You know what I mean." He took a stepped towards me and I stepped back. He stopped, grey eyes flicking down to where my left hand cradled my right one. "Are you going to tell me what happened to your hand?"
"None of your business, are you going to tell me why you smell of her?"
"She came on to me, I was half asleep and told her to get the hell away from me. That was it, I swear. I don't even know how long ago that was." He looked so earnest, but all I could see was Sapphire's full lips and then I imagined them all over his mouth. I squeezed my eyes shut in an attempt to shut it out, however the smell pervaded my senses. Even more so now that I'd acknowledged its origins.
"I can't concentrate with that smell clinging to you." I said through gritted teeth, I moved forward and lightly sniffed his shirt, "It's all over you." I turned to leave but Seth grabbed my left hand, "Let go!" I snapped.
He sighed, his free hand coming up to squeeze his temples. "You're doing that thing again."
I stopped trying to pull my hand free, taking the bait. "What thing?"
"You're using anything as an excuse to get away. It's me, I know you Jess. I know you want to believe me."
"You also forget that I know you," I quipped,
Seth made an expression as if to say 'yeah, and?' He looked at me expectantly, waiting for me to go on.
"I know you so well." Yeah I had nothing. I was blanking, but you can't blame me- my hand! I mentally face-palmed at my own uselessness. So I kept yelling, frustrated at my own frustration over my inability to find a reason to be angry other than a smell. "God Seth! I disappeared for a minute, a minute! I came back and you were gone!" I was reaching. "Why didn't you just fucking wait for me!" I was shouting, why was I shouting? "You couldn't?"
Everyone has a breaking point, even Seth. I'm pretty sure he'd held out long enough. "Jesus Christ Jesse!" His eyes flashed angrily and I'm pretty sure I've never been more turned on. But god damn it Sapphire's scent was driving me mental. "What? She was all over you! You can't deny that!"
"I told you, nothing happened between us! Why can't you just trust me, I've done nothing but try to make you happy."
I scoffed, "Come on, like don't you want to get back at me for breaking you two up in the fir-?" I stopped abruptly. There it was, that insecurity. The fear that maybe he was going to do to me what I did to him. Seth let go of my arm without another word.
He walked past me towards the bathroom door. "Where are you going?" I asked, my voice raw with both shouting and the fact that I wanted his answer. I knew what my question meant. It meant I didn't trust him, that I thought the worst of him, god why was this so damn hard for me?
Seth opened the bathroom door and I followed him. "We've known each other since we were kids, do you really think I'm that vindictive?" He finally replied as I walked into the bathroom, I stopped to watch him slide the clear door open and step into the large shower. Was he having a mental breakdown himself?
"What are you-"
"Does the smell bother you that much?" He asked, I nodded because for some reason it really did. I don't know whether it was because I used to find it arousing, or whether because Seth used to smell of it when he was dating her or, or… I didn't even know. As I nodded Seth nodded too, seemingly to himself, before locating the shower faucet handle and turning it on.
"What are you doing?!" I stood there watching as the water cascaded down over Seth's head, soaking his white shirt…making it cling to his muscled body, I shook my head, stop perving!
Over the sound of the shower Seth informed me that he was getting rid of the smell. "You're insane!" I said back.
"Takes one to know one." He responded simply and I couldn't help the laugh that bubbled out of me. He was standing in a shower, fully dressed, water beating down on him as he stared at me seriously. I could hardly breathe from laughing, or was it because of the steam? I wiped my eyes, "Oh my god, I'm in love with a weirdo." When Seth's smile broke across his face I felt my chest constrict slightly, should I be worried about the health of my cardiac muscle?
I backed into the door and locked it, moving towards the door that led to the adjoining room to make sure that it too was locked.
"You joining me or something?" He asked, looking ridiculously attractive standing in a running shower fully clothed, I felt my smile widen as I neared the shower.
"Depends, are clothes optional?" Seth's grinning expression slackened, eyes sobering faster than you could say 'eager.' I kicked off my heels before stepping into the shower with him, I stood back, eyebrow raised as I motioned with my head. He got the hint immediately, peeling his shirt off. My own grin was palpable whilst my eyes appraised the way his muscles moved beneath his skin. He leaned around me to drop his shirt outside the shower, his body sliding against mine as he did so.
"Your-" Seth looked down at my black dress, his gaze working back up as I stood up on tiptoe to slide my left arm around his neck. I pulled his head down towards mine, cutting off whatever he was going to say when I pressed my lips against his.
The banging on the bathroom door was not welcome, and I was ready to ignore it completely but it was insistent. I wrenched myself away from Seth's hold, my dress lay discarded on the shower floor, still clad in my underwear, I opened the cupboard in the bathroom and was relieved to find a green bathrobe. I donned it before opening the door, "this bathroom is occupad- oh." Carlo stood on the other side not bothering to wave away the torrent of steam that whooshed out of the bathroom at him, he had Seth's leather jacket slung over his shoulder.
"Jeremy's parents came home early." He informed us, my eyes widened and I turned around just as Seth turned off the shower, he bent down to pick up my dress. Seth was still half dressed at least, my eyes refused to look away from him as he stepped out of the shower, the water beading down his torso. What? It'd perfectly acceptable to objectify the male body; the female body has been objectified for years. Just doing my feminist duty here.
"They're threatening to call the cops." Carlo's voice called me back from Perve City, and looked down at my attire.
"Shut, should I ditch the robe?" I wondered aloud, Carlo shrugged before he turned around and I could have sworn there was a grin on his face as he did. "Should we make a break for it?" Seth asked from behind me,
Carlo was no help as he shrugged again. In the end Jeremy escorted us out and he told me to keep the robe. His eyes were bright as he relayed that his parents were livid, it was like this was the first reaction he'd gotten from them, ever. "They're threatening to ground me, it's too fucking funny." As we left I reached up and kissed Jeremy on the cheek, stopping him in the middle of a sentence about how his parents have never been angrier and therefore present in his life. I couldn't help but chuckle a bit.
"Great party Dern, good luck with the future."
A/N: Yeah, I should keep going but I'm tired and I just want to update. I'm sorry for the delay, typos and the shoddy ending of this chapter, I can't apologise enough.
Oh and mosey on over to my profile page for details on how you could have an update (of this or anything else) within the week.