A.N: I love movies. Well really, I love anything that involves stories, characters and conflict. And I have the uncanny (and sometimes annoying [for others]) talent of remembering word for word quotes, whole storylines, character traits and film facts of movies that I have only seen one or two times. It's kind of my party trick and can come in handy at trivia nights. So really it was a long time coming that I wrote a story that revolves around film knowledge. I had a lot of fun writing this and I hope you enjoy.
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Julia Roberts was laughing at me.
Mind you, she was laughing at me from a Vintage poster of 'Pretty Woman' and Richard Gere looked pretty amused himself. But I could tell that those crimson coloured lips and stark white teeth were twisted in a smirk due to my predicament. She was saying that in this very moment I was every bit of a loser; all because I was attempting to choose a movie with Patrick.
Renting a new release DVD with my best friend is not the lamest thing I could've done on a Saturday night. Trolling through the aisles of Video Ezy with my second best guy friend because everyone else was righteously studying for exams, however, came pretty darn close. We had entered the store with a clear idea of the movie we wanted to get, but when reaching out to find only decorative cases adorning the shelves, the whole "Rent now, or Rent free" slogan did little to quell the fact that I now had to find a movie that both Patrick and myself could agree upon; the first choice had been a miracle in itself.
Patrick, although being my second best guy friend, was my first choice for all film related events; he was the only one of my friends who let me get peanut m&m's instead of regular and he (after extensive begging, pleading, bribing and blackmailing) put up with the fact that my go to movie genre was romance. I liked to think I was educating him to become a well-rounded boyfriend for some grateful girl; especially since his Saturday nights were pretty much always free to be commandeered by me. So it was that we faced the ever extending new release wall, decorated with the frozen grins, moody pouts and photo shopped explosions of the blockbuster hits of the last six months.
"What do you want?"I flipped my hair back over my shoulder and raised my eyebrows at him.
"I don't think that really matters, we always get a crappy romance and then you ball your eyes out and eat a tub of ice cream." He replied distractedly, pulling his hands out of his jean pockets and extending one to clasp onto a DVD case, flipping it around so he could read the blurb.
"I do not!" I flung my hand back and felt it slap satisfyingly against his hard chest. It was usually only half a tub. I pulled the case from him and after seeing the words 'zombie', 'apocalypse' and 'slaughter' placed it back on the shelf, shooting him a deprecating glare.
Patrick returned the look before flinging an arm around my shoulders and steering me out of the section and into comedy. "I've got the pictures to prove it, Charlotte."
"There is nothing wrong with the movies I choose." I enforced, trying not to smile at his theatrical eye roll. We passed a girl who was quietly arguing with her boyfriend about how 'Zak and Miri make a Porno' was not an appropriate date night choice. She paused in her diatribe to take in Patrick's arm around me and the fact I was removing bad movies from his hands, before shooting me a knowing smile. I returned the smile awkwardly and hightailed it out of comedy and into action. Just because I was comfortable with his arm around me did not mean that we were an item. I mean it would be nice, I'm sure, but Patrick was unattainable except for the hours of six to twelve on a Saturday night. He never answered my texts, never suggested we do anything outside of movie night and always kept a distance of thirty centimetres when we were sitting on the couch; I had seen enough chick flicks to work out that he just wasn't that into me, in a romantic way.
Patrick chuckled and picked up a vintage Schwarzenegger film. "Everything is wrong with the movies you choose; they are completely unrealistic and create false expectations for impressionable minds like your own."
I let out a snort and turned to stare sardonically into his dark green eyes. "Well, how does it feel to be up on your high horse Mr 'I put a Transformers sticker on my car in the hopes that one day it will rise to defeat the Decepticons'?" I yanked the DVD out of his hand and walked back to place it on the shelf. I grabbed onto his hand and pulled him into the next aisle; foreign films.
He allowed me to lead him into the new release section and raised his eyebrows. "Wow, that's an awfully long name."
I let go of his warm and strong grip to grab onto the colourful cover of a Bollywood film, before calling nonchalantly over my shoulder. "Shut Up."
I saw his hand grip onto the shelf as he leant over me to read the blurb of film, his breath hitting my ear and making me shiver. "The last one we watched- 'The Breakfast Club'- what the hell was that?"
My heart stopped at his implied blasphemy against the John Hughes masterpiece. Turning slowly, I raise my glare from his chest to his face and poked my finger in his ribs. "That is a classic. Bender and Claire are one of the original good girl/ bad boy combinations!"
That he would dare say anything against the epic piece of film, made me want to slap him in the face, no matter how good looking it was.
"They hate each other though." He shook his head and grabbed onto my finger before I could poke him again. The very statement had me rolling my eyes and turning away from him, a French title catching my eyes and drawing me over to another shelf. I continued educating him on the intricacies of the film's plot.
"No, they didn't understand each other. But by being in detention together they realised they had the same kind of problems and hopes and dreams. Through that they were able to learn more about each other and themselves; including what they felt about each other." I finished, remembering the final scene where Judd Nelson thrusts his fist into the air; it still gave me goose bumps.
Patrick followed me, picking up a Japanese film that had blood splatters and a scary looking child on the cover. "I don't get it." He mumbled.
That made me chuckle and turn back to him. "Of course you don't get it. You have the emotional intelligence of a Dorito."
He pouted comically and grasped his hand to his heart. "Hey, that's unfair to Doritos. But back to what I was saying; all they do is scream at each other for the first hour and a half, then she puts lipstick on using her tits and then she's sucking his neck in a closet." He put his hands up in surrender and shrugged, placing the DVD back on the shelf.
I stopped in his path and shook my head, saying slowly and clearly. "It's called sexual tension, Patrick."
He grabbed my wrist and pulled me against his chest, bending his head down so his mouth was an inch away from mine before whispering. "It's called bullshit, Lottie."
Recovering momentarily from my mini heart attack, I pulled away and walked into the next aisle; my aisle, romance. "What about 'The Bodyguard'? You can't find anything wrong with that one."
He chuckled and leant on the shelf. "I beg to differ. That was a total conflict of interest and he deserved to lose his job." He looked extremely smug and held out both palms to perform a 'bring it on' gesture. I gladly complied and started snooping through the shelves to find the most romantic movies to support my argument. The smiling face of Sandra Bullock caught my eye and I mirrored her ecstatic expression.
"While you were Sleeping." I announced, waving the plastic coated cover in his face.
He grabbed it amusedly and brushed past me, placing it back in its original spot. "Crazy-ass stalker who tries to hook up with an unconscious guy." He bowed his head for me to continue and I shot him an annoyed glare, ducking under his arm, I reached for a case where some squinty eyes were looking out at me cheekily.
"Bridget Jones Diary?"
"Rip off of 'Pride and Prejudice'."
I sighed and planted my fist on my hips. "Pride and Prejudice, then." I relented.
"Now I ain't sayin' she a gold digger..." he began to sing and perform what looked like some distant relative of a 'Dougie'.
I pinched his arm at the terrible lies he was saying about one of my favourite literary heroines. "Oh, shut up...What about 'A walk to Remember'?" I couldn't help but sigh at the thought of the Nicholas Sparks classic.
A disgusted look passed across Patrick's face and he raised one eyebrow in contempt. "Popular boy feels sorry for the terminally ill girl and marries her because he knows she's going to die; Real nice." He nodded and pulled on the back of my shirt, steering me in front of the new release section.
"You do not have a romantic bone in your body." I muttered as his arm rested back on my shoulders.
He leant into me and that same shivery feeling went up my arms until he said quietly. "I've got one..."
I pushed away from him and tried to stop the laughter bubbling up from his disturbing eyebrow twitching and his contagious chuckle. "Eww, Okay I'm pulling out the big guns." I planted my hands together and rested them on my lips. Taking a breath, I closed my eyes and announced slowly. "Gone with the Wind." I paused and turned to him, letting the gravity of the epic movie set in.
He stared at me incredulously. "Seriously? That's the big gun? She's got a thing for a different guy and when she finally decides she loves her husband, he leaves her!"
I huffed a sigh and started a speed round of romantic movies in a last ditch effort to convince Patrick of their worth. "Two words: Dirty. Dancing."
"Three words: Summer fling only."
"Nights in Rodanthe."
"They both die!" he enforced with a smile, shaking his head and shooting me a 'are you kidding?' look.
"Well are there any romantic movies that you feel are appropriate?" I spread my arms around the aisle and motioned to the hundreds upon hundreds of titles that held the greatest love stories of our time.
"No." He shook his head casually and made to walk out of the aisle, I grabbed onto his hand and pulled him back, his complete resistance to my side of the argument increasing my annoyance.
"Why are you so intent on defending them?" he asked forcefully. I was taken aback by his tone and returned it in full.
"Because! Because we have no real romance left in the world." I announced. "People's relationships change at the click of a button and everyone is trying to get the whole package of marriage, mortgage and kids in such a short space of time and then they wonder why it all falls to shit a couple of years later."
I sighed and tried to explain the lure of the titles surrounding us. " I like sitting down and being full engaged in a love story; where they have their sarcastic best friend to help them out or they seem to be impeccably dressed at just the right time and where people work through their problems and fight for each other... even if it is only for ninety minutes." I crossed my arms in defence, looking at every corner of the room except for the area surrounding him. Finally I huffed and walked into the family movie section; the familiar characters and bright colours in direct contrast to my, now, dark mood.
After a few moments of silence I felt him walk up behind me and his presence linger. "You don't think there is real romance left in the world?"
Really, that was what he got of that spiel? "No, I don't" I shook my head.
He walked around and looked at me steadily and carefully before replying simply. "Well that's sad."
"Hence why I watch these movies." I mumbled and grabbed the DVD of Beauty and the Beast, reading the blurb that I had already memorised.
"So you know of no good real life romances?" he probed.
"Nope." I placed the DVD back and circled around him to enter the romance aisle again. He kept pace with me and then grabbed my wrist.
"Cleopatra and Antony" he challenged and I turned around and stared incredulously at him. Really? He was going to attempt to use my own game against me, well; I was just as equipped with the knowledge to take him down in a verbal fight.
I smiled and pushed the niggling thought of why he was so intent on convincing me that romance did exist outside of movies. "She hooked up with his best friend as well as her brother and her dad-she was a messed up skank." I crossed my arms and nodded for him to continue.
Tapping his finger on his chin, he snapped his fingers and pointed to me excitedly. "Napoleon and Josephine."
I rolled my eyes. "They cheated on each other and then he ditched her because she couldn't have children."
He narrowed his eyes and let go of my wrist. "Speed round?"
"Bring it on, babe." I chuckled and mimicked his hand movements from when our roles were reversed.
"One word: Brangelina."
"Two Words: Jennifer Aniston."
"Prince Rainier and Grace Kelly."
"Queen Victoria and Prince Albert."
"Sid and Nancy."
My grin widened and leant away from him. "...Seriously."
"Okay, I'll give you that one." He relented, smiling sullenly before running a hand through his already messy hair.
"Like I said movies are better."I shrugged and made to walk up the aisle to where the classics were placed.
"How about the one where the guy spends his Saturday nights with this oblivious girl, picking out a movie that he knows he's going to hate, just so he can spend more time with her, on the off chance that maybe- just maybe- she'll figure out that he wouldn't do that for any other girl?"
"Which movie is that?" I asked looking up and down the aisle, for what sounded like a pretty interesting plot. The sound of Patrick chuckling made me turn to see his eyes locked on me expectantly, his hands were jammed back in his pockets and his feet scuffed into the carpet nervously. That was when it clicked. "Oh..."
"That's our movie." He offered awkwardly.
I couldn't stop the grin splitting across my face and bit my lip to stop myself from getting too excited. "Well, I would say that's pretty romantic..." I said carefully. It would also mean that maybe I was wrong about Patrick being unattainable.
"and?" he stood straighter and raised an eyebrow questioningly, but I could tell from the pull at the corners of his mouth that he was trying desperately not to smile back at me.
I clasped my hands behind my back and took a one step closer to him, the multitude of DVDs, customers and posters seemed to blur in comparison to the sight before me. "and I would say that he could pick the movie out tonight?" I offered.
He nodded in agreement and matched my step; reducing the distance between us and make the hair on my arms stand on end. "and?"
"and what else?" I took a final step and could feel my palms start to sweat where they were grasping on to each other. It didn't take a genius to figure out that, from the moment I had figured out Patricks thinly disguised plot summary, our relationship would not be the same as when we walked in the door of the DVD store. But that didn't stop me from feeling nervous at the prospect of sharing more than an appreciation for movies with him.
His mouths finally broke out into a grin and he looked down at me expectantly. "You tell me; what usually happens in the movies after a declaration of affection."
"Well the two characters would kiss...usually with some form of precipitation coming down from the sky." I motioned idly to the ceiling where only the bright clinical lights and informative signs descended.
"Well I can't make it rain, so would you settle for kissing me next to the 'When Harry met Sally display." He tilted his head to the 'Becky Recommends' sign and slid his hands onto my hips, pulling me close and ducking his head down to smile at me.
"If I must." I grinned and pulled him forward by the front of his shirt.
Our first kiss was quick, it was awkward and it made me chuckle from how he bumped his nose on my cheek bone. But when he glared jokingly at me and held my chin between his thumb and forefinger, sweeping his lips across mine for a second slower, calculated and extensive kiss, I felt my breath hitch and my heart start to beat fast; definitely not something to laugh about. He traced his tongue across mine before pulling away and consecutively licking and biting his bottom lip; the very movement causing me to involuntarily move forward before I caught myself.
I blinked stupidly a few times and stared up at his grinning face. "We're not getting anything by Quentin Tarantino." I finally said and grabbed onto his hand.
"Damn you, woman." He cursed teasingly and pulled me over to the thriller aisle. It would probably take a long time before we found a DVD we would both agree upon, but at least I could be sure I'd be leaving the video store with something I didn't have to return the next day.
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