A/N: Wow it's been a really long time since the last time I visited this site. Real life has been kicking my butt, but I'm back for now.

Prompt: Put your iPod on shuffle and write drabbles for the next five songs that pop up!

Yup, drabbles, since I have no faith whatsoever in my ability to write (and continue!) multi-chaptered stories anymore.

Five drabbles. Just so you know, they're not particularly related to one another. But it's up to you to imagine otherwise. (It'll be good if you could listen to the five songs as you read!)

I'm out of practice, so do bear with me while I figure out this writing thing again (I've been told it's like riding a bike). Quickly beta-read by myself, so sorry in advance for any mistakes you might come across!

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Five stories about him and her

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i.

I swear it's for the best,
and then your frequency is pulling me in closer
'til I'm home...

(something corporate - watch the sky)

-

They've danced this dance, over and over.

"I can't take this anymore," he'll say. "You make me miserable."

"You make me miserable," she'll say. "I'm so tired of this."

They need a break -- from each other. Things between them have always been too hot or too cold; intense one day, chilly the next.

Because objectively, they're so wrong for each other. He's the down-to-earth, boy-next-door type. He helps neighbours bring their groceries in. She's the spoiled girl with everything she could ever want.

She's always telling him that he's too nice -- everyone takes advantage of him (she does, too). He's always telling her how selfish she is. Her father hates him. His mother does not approve.

And yet, she finds him there at the beach, at their spot. He's lying down directly on the sand, arms folded under his head, and he's staring up, watching the sky. She pauses, her eyes sweeping over him, pausing on his face, then his body. It's been three weeks since she's last seen him.

She must have made a sound, because his head turns her way sharply. He just watches her, his gaze catching on her eyes. He doesn't look surprised. She doesn't think she looks surprised to see him there either.

Her legs wake up, and she starts walking. She straddles his hips when she reaches him, and he instinctively leans up to reach her face, his fingers tangled in her hair, hers in his. He kisses her, full of yearning and words left unsaid, and when she opens her mouth and feels his tongue tease hers, she doesn't even feel the sand biting viciously at her knees.

When they finally part, they stare into each other's eyes, and there's no need for words. "I miss you," he says, anyway.

She smiles into their next kiss. She leans her forehead against his, and whispers against his lips, "I love you."

"Let's get back together," he says as he nuzzles into the joint of her neck.

"I make you miserable," she reminds him, voice light, but he must have read something in her eyes, because he kisses her again, a sweet meeting of their lips.

"I'm even more miserable without you," he tells her.

"Me too," she says, and then kisses him again, wanting the talking to be over.

One day, they tell themselves. One day, they'll admit that nothing will amount from their constant back-and-forth. That they'll just keep breaking up and getting back together, until there's nothing left there worth fixing. But that day is not now, so they'll enjoy it while it lasts.

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ii.

When the life in your eyes once black
Things return, you've come back
With your body and mind restored
It's good to see you once more

(other lives - black tables)

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He returns home on a Thursday. He rings the doorbell first, afraid of intruding. When there's no answer, he briefly considers waiting outside the door, but he knows how nosy the neighbours are, and he knows she wouldn't appreciate the gossip at all.

He uses his keys, and admits to himself that he's relieved to hear the click as the door opens -- he was afraid she changed the locks the day he left, without saying goodbye.

He knows she knows where he had been these past months. He's clean now. He tells himself that that's enough, that she'll be glad to see him back. But he knows it's not that simple.

Their home -- the apartment they used to share -- looks the same, but only on the surface. He feels his heart ache when he sees the photo frame that once held a picture of the two of them, eyes squinting a little from the strong sun, but smiling so brightly and happily. That was one of the good days, he remembers, before. Now, what's left is her half -- she probably folded his side of the picture so it wouldn't show. Or more likely, she tore his side of the picture. He flinches at the thought of her anger (she's always been a little hot-tempered), but tells himself to man up.

He glances around the place, looking for any other changes, but there was nothing too obvious. He's glad to see there's no sign of another new man in her life, but he reminds himself that this -- coming back into her life -- has nothing to do with that. He wants to tell her sorry, and to hope for her to forgive him. He knows it'll be hard, for her more than him, but he wants so badly to make amends.

He sits down on the sofa (it's as comfortable as he remembers), and goes over the speech he had prepared again and again. He wants to get it right.

But later, when the door swings open and he catches sight of her for the first time in too long, he immediately forgets what he meant to say.

"Hello," he tries, but there's a croak in his throat. She stops, still, tears trailing down her face, and he is dimly aware of the fact that his face is wet too.

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iii.

Baby tell me please
Is this a dream
Spending the night with you
Beneath the cherry trees
Just make a wish and everything comes true

(au revoir simone - through the backyards of our neighbours)

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He can't believe he's with her. Where did he go right, he wonders.

He must have stared at her too long and too hard, because she turns to him, and scowls. "What?"

He laughs. "I can't believe I'm here with you," he admits.

He watches as a hint of red tints her cheeks. She turns away from him and looks back up at the cherry tree they're been lying under, but not before an exaggerated roll of her eyes. "Whatever," she says.

He doesn't want to make her uncomfortable, so he too looks up and muses at how her cheeks are the exact same shade of the cherries in the tree. He doesn't make a sound when her hand reaches over and her fingers twine in his. A passing wind causes the leaves to rustle, and they both smile to themselves.

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iv.

Lay with me
I'll lay with you
We'll do the things that lovers do
Put the stars in our eyes
And with heart-shaped bruises
And late-night kisses divine

(the maccabees - toothpaste kisses)

-

At first, it's really weird. This shift from strangers, to acquaintances, to not-really-enemies-but-not-friends-either snarking passive-aggressively at each other, to semi-friends who tolerate each other, because gosh, their best friends are dating each other, and they've been warned to get along, or else.

They start hanging out every other night, at first with both their best friends. But the constant canoodling and goo-goo eyes get old real fast, and so they start hanging out, just the two of them.

Again, it's weird at first. And then, gradually, it's not.

She kisses him one night as they're watching another of those chick flicks she likes, the same ones he tells her he hates but she knows he secretly enjoys -- because he's so not that selfless.

She likes that he does not go down the shocked-face-what-are-you-doing route. Instead, he kisses her back, like they've been dating for a while now. And when they part, she almost expects him to look at her different. Maybe with just a little hint of surprise. Or maybe he would say, "I've waited a long time to do that," or any number of cheesy lines in those movies they're both fond of, when the hero and the heroine finally get together.

He doesn't do any of the things she half-expects him to. Instead, he just grins at her, that same shit-eating grin that used to drive her crazy. Now, all it does is make her want to kiss him again. And so she does.

So maybe they have been dating for a while now.

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v.

When we speak
But our words won't let us say so
And we wished we let it all show
We started falling apart
At the heart
We'll be broken 'til the end

(red wanting blue - pride is a lonely blanket)

-

He's at his locker, and when he sees her walking towards him, he automatically says, "Hey."

"Hey," she replies. Then out of the blue, "I like you a lot."

He turns to her, heart thudding oddly in his chest, and lifts his eyebrows. "Okaaay? Is this a dare?"

She shrugs. "Just thought you should know."

He feels just a little bit discomfited by the way she looks into his eyes, all earnest and truthful. He feels annoyed for some reason. Maybe because he wishes he could be that honest. "Don't you have any pride?"

She looks somewhat stung. "What does pride have to do with anything?"

"Telling a guy you like him straight to his face is a bit..." He gives her a look, playing the part of the jerk that everyone else thinks he is.

"When you like someone, does saying so hurt your pride?" Her eyes, again -- it's like they're looking right through him.

He shuffles his feet a little, more than ready for this conversation to be over. "Well, generally, yeah," he replies, lamely.

She smiles at him, something intimate and playful in the curve of her lips. "I do have a lot of pride, you know. But maybe I like you just a little more than I like my pride."

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fin.