Authors Note: Hey guys! So, I felt like writing a fanfic! XD It's an AU, but I hope you all enjoy it. It will not be the greatest piece of literary work ever, being as it's been a long time since I have sat down to seriously write anything, but I hope you will forgive me and read it anyway! 8D Enjoy!
There was an army of Gnomes parading around the room. Each one carrying it’s own special little hammer or shovel. Round and round the room they went, their heavy feet thudding loudly on the floor, each one striking his head with their hammer or shovel as they went past.
“No… Noo… Stop it…” Batting out weakly with his arm, the red head curled up, hiding his face in his other elbow as he swatted at the imaginary creatures stomping around his skull.
Groaning and shifting more, the young man gradually began to waken, though the dull pounding in his brain persisted, growing briefly sharp with the opening of his hazel eyes. Slamming them shut once again, Joel MacKenzie gave a soft groan and pressed his face into the hard floor.
“…Whut..?” Squinting, and setting a hand to his aching head, Joel gingerly pushed himself up and rested on his elbow, vaguely wondering if he’d fallen out of bed again.
Thick glass lay in a glittering heap against the wall-- a broken mug. Several poorly graded essays littered his desk and floor in a shredded mess. A picture frame lay broken on the desk and empty cans and bottles lay scattered about the small, one person dorm room.
Groaning softly, Joel slowly got to his feet, staggering slightly and sitting heavily on his bed. The covers were disarrayed and his pillow was attempting to slide off, but it didn’t appear slept in. He was even still fully dressed!
Gazing about the room, still massaging his aching head, Joel tried to piece together the night before, but it was like looking across the harbour on a foggy morning-- impossible.
Rain pattered against the window gently; the sound soothing and calming. Taking a deep breath, the red head fell back on his bed, one arm over his eyes, one foot on the floor.
He knew he’d gone out the night before, he’d been quite excited about it the whole previous day after all. He recalled coming back to his room to get ready for it, but oddly enough he couldn’t remember when he’d left or even where he’d gone or what time he’d come back.
Forcing himself to sit up once again and ignoring the way his head swam, Joel looked around his room again, wincing slightly against the dull light of the cloudy day outside.
There! He’d obviously gone out. His suit jacket was draped over the back of the chair, clearly where he’d thrown it upon getting back. But, upon further staring at it, Joel realized the white shirt he’d been going to wear was nowhere in sight and he was wearing a green t-shirt and torn jeans. The same things he’d been wearing yesterday afternoon.
Sighing loudly, the red head stood up and wobbled over to his dresser and picking up the Tylenol bottle on top of it, quickly took two before heading over to his room door and stepping out into the hallway.
Things would start making sense after his morning pee. Things ALWAYS fell into place after his morning pee.
And right away, Joel knew there were things that most definitely needed to make sense, and soon. As he walked down the hall to the bathroom, the few guys that were already out there for some reason or another were giving him… Strange looks. The Nova Scotian didn’t even know how to describe them. Pitying? Disgusted?
Thoroughly confused, Joel went about his mornings business and then headed back to his room, scratching his still aching head in bewilderment. He’d just received one of the strangest comments he’d ever received in a bathroom.
“Hey man. Good luck.” Were the four grim words uttered by the other student, accompanied by a firm pat to his shoulder.
“All right… Whut happened.” Joel asked himself, letting his door fall shut behind him. Standing in the centre of his room, the red head stared intently about, willing his throbbing brain to recall the nights events. “Went out with, Bonnie I did…” He muttered, closing his eyes in concentration and putting his face into his hands. “Special date afor she went off t’that competition of sorts..”
His girlfriend, Marie, was going away in a couple days for two weeks for some sort of engineering competition. It was something of a big deal to her and they’d decided to celebrate, with just the two of them before she left. Whether or not she won at the competition itself, as far as Joel was concerned, she was already one of the winners.
But where had they gone for their big date?
“C’mon MacKenzie… Think…” Deciding that picking up some of the disaster that had settled in his room over night, would be a better way to think of what happened than standing there, Joel began to move slowly across the room, his rather nasty hangover headache still keeping him from moving too fast.
Getting down on one knee, Joel pouted slightly as he looked at the broken mug and set about picking up the pieces.
“Damn… this was a collec…” Pausing, Joel stared at the broken glass, his eyes narrowing in concentration. Seconds ticked by on the clock on the shelf, each one sounding loud in the otherwise quiet room.
Quite suddenly, the broken chunks of glass slipped from Joel’s fingers as the red head sucked in a sudden sharp breath.
“Stanley, what the hell are you doing?” With her umbrella held in one hand, Tim Hortons cup of coffee in the other, Law Professor Craig stared at what was one of her best students (though she was questioning that fact at the moment), standing outside his dormitory building, on the lawn in the pouring rain while wearing a trench coat and holding an old fashioned umbrella above his head, looking as though he belonged in a Mary Poppins movie.
“What does it look like I‘m doing Professor?” Oliver Stanley replied pointedly, as though it was the esteemed professor asking a stupid question.
“But wh-” Catching herself, Professor Craig, held back her question and reminded herself, that though he was, at times an arrogant windbag, this particular student had a sort of brilliance that the others lacked. Brilliance that bordered obsessive and just plain insane. Also, it was a Saturday morning, she hadn’t had her coffee yet and she had around forty papers to mark. “Tell me about it, in detail on Monday Stanley.”
Swallowing a mouthful of hot coffee and determinedly not looking at the soaking wet blonde as she walked by, Professor Craig made her way towards the building where her office was located.
Hardly noticing her departure, Oliver twirled his umbrella a few times, glancing about himself. Then, delicately he stepped off the lawn and onto the path, heading towards the large dorm building, Oliver spun the umbrella once again.
Upon entering the building, Oliver merely flashed a winning and somewhat flirty grin at the startled desk attendant before dripping his way up the stairs, rain water pooling under his feet and dripping off his umbrella and the bottom of his coat.
Hurrying up the stairs to the sixth floor, the blonde slipped slightly on the sixth landing, sliding a little harder than he would’ve liked into the floor door, but after giving his nose a quick rub, he flashed his ID card over the door sensor and pushed it open.
The dorm hallway stretched both to the right and to the left, doors branching off it at regular intervals. With a knowing smirk about his lips, Oliver marched determinedly down the left corridor, leaving damp and muddy footprints on the tan carpet (it had an ugly brown pattern, the mud was an improvement in his opinion and as always, his opinion was the only one that mattered).
“Joel!” Yelling his friends name upon reaching the door at the end, Oliver pounded his fist upon it a few times and grinned. “MacKenzie! Heeey!” Ignoring the annoyed looks he was getting by other boys sticking their heads out of doors down the corridor, Oliver continued pounding on the door for another solid twenty seconds, before coming to the conclusion that his friend, Joel was not in the room. “What is this!?” Oliver demanded of no one in particular, feeling righteously angry. “I told him to expect my arrival this morning! Unless of course…” Stroking his chin in thought, the blond soon nodded in satisfaction, coming to a conclusion that soothed his formerly wounded ego. “Ahh… he must be over at HER place instead of her being here.” Grinning wickedly, the boy chuckled at the thought of Joel being smuggled into that all girl building with it’s particularly strict Dorm Mother. “Then again… If he wore that “not a skirt” he likes to wear…”
Chuckling at his own cruel joke, Oliver turned away from the door, prepared to leave the corridor and grace the dining hall with his presence for weekend breakfast, when he noted one of the other floor boys looking at him. Lifting an eyebrow and eyeing the lesser being with a snide sort of air, he silently asked him what the hell he wanted.
“Y’might want to go rescue Kenzie’ We think he’s tryin’ to drown ‘isself in the bathroom.”
With a dull bang, the bathroom door thudded against the wall as Oliver Stanley flung it open. It didn’t take long for him to spot the supposedly drowning Nova Scotian. His legs lay sprawled on the floor, sticking out from under an ugly beige curtain of one of the four shower stalls.
Frowning, Oliver marched across the tiled floor and swiftly pulled back the curtain and stared down at the red head laying face down on the floor of the shower stall, cold water pounding his back. Oliver didn’t even want to touch the shower floor with bare feet! The thought of touching it with his face made him grimace and shudder visibly.
“Joel! What the hell are you doing?” He demanded, reaching down to peel his friend up off the floor.
“Grnlstbonnnn…” The garbled reply spoken into the shower drain made little sense. Sighing heavily, Oliver heaved a few times on the Scotian’s limp arm before turning the shower off, bending down and bodily lifting the other up. “Nooooo…” Joel groaned, clearly wanting to be left alone to drown in peace. Ignoring the redheads protest, Oliver dragged him away from the shower stall before dumping him unceremoniously on the floor in the middle of the bathroom.
“Now, what were you doing?”
“Lsstmbonn…” Covering his face with his hands, Joel mumbled in reply again and shook his head.
Snorting in impatience and clearly getting tired of this, Oliver knelt down and straddling Joel’s legs, he grabbed the red head by the shoulders, hauled him up and gave him a shake.
“What was that Bluenoser!?” He demanded, determined to get a straightforward answer from his friend and hopefully get the steamy details of his date the night before.
“I LOST HER!” Clutching at Oliver with cold shower numbed hands, Joel stared at the startled blond intensely, water dripping down his face and off his jaw. “I LOST M’BONNIE LASS!”
“We broke up! We ar’ fini! Do not make me repeat myself! S’il vous plait!” Glaring furiously at the long haired girl, Marie McCain slammed her door shut with a resounding bang. She stared at the heavy door with hard blue eyes, her hands clenching and unclenching by her sides. Gradually, her grit teeth loosened and her lower lip began to tremble. Blinking, the blonde looked down at her feet and then leaned forward, pressing her forehead into the door, closing her eyes tightly.
Outside the door, she could hear voices, the other girls in the all female dorm were out on the landing, talking. Talking about what she’d just essentially shouted to the whole place.
Grinding her forehead against the wood, Marie ignored the women in the hallway, ignored the way her lip quivered and ignored the way her eyes burned.
If it was a few minutes, or hours she spent sitting on the floor by herself, the pretty blonde didn’t know, she had things to do, things to focus on. Such as packing for her -hopefully- two week trip. If she managed to make it through to the finals, it would be two weeks, if not… It might only be two days.
Going over her plans for the competition in her mind, Marie absently folded and packed clothing into a suitcase. So focused was she on her task, that she jumped and gave a startled gasp at the sudden loud knock on her door.
“Marie! Marie mon cher! Open de door!” Hearing the thick French accent of her friend, Marie hurried to oblige. Stepping swiftly across the small room, she pulled open the door and looked at her friend, looking as though he’d just stepped off the runway, as per usual.
Gently pushing her aside and stepping into the room, Jean ran a hand through his hair, as he gave the familiar room a quick once over, his sharp grey eyes noting every out of place detail. From the black dress, so lovingly selected, now lying crumpled on the floor in the corner, one black shoe on its side next to it, the other by the foot of the bed.
Turning his head sharply, he looked at the woman standing next to him. Taking in her flushed cheeks, watery eyes and occasional sniffs, he sighed and gave her a sad little smile, shaking his head.
“Oh, Marie… Viens ici…” Opening his arms, he drew her into a tight embrace, patting her thick, wavy hair as she buried her face into his shoulder and wept. “C’est okay mon fille… E’was only an Englishman. We will find you a nice French boy, oui?” Sighing, Jean rubbed her back as Marie proceeded to cry harder.
“Let… Me get this straight…” Standing in Joel’s dorm, Oliver narrowed his eyes and glared at the red head sitting listlessly in his desk chair, staring at the ceiling dully. “Somehow, what was supposed to have been a hot, sexy date wishing her luck, turned into a shout match between the two of you with her stomping off into the night.”
“…That pretty much covers it… Thank ya.. F’that Oli..” Joel replied in a deadpan tone of voice, pressing the heels of his hands against his eyes and groaning.
“Anytime!” Brushing off his friends obvious misery, Oliver marched over and placing his hands on either of the chair arms, leaned down close to Joel. “Besides! Joel! Only morons come to University tied down. Now you’re free to scope out all the fine babes…” Smirking, Oliver nodded in satisfaction, knowing Joel would see things his way.
Instead, the Scotian merely lowered his hands and gave Oliver a very pointed stare, lifting one eyebrow in question.
“That’d make you a moron too, y’know? Or ‘ave y’forgotten ‘bout Jean?” It was but the work of a moment. The smug grin was wiped off Oliver’s face and instead the blonde rolled his eyes.
“Did y’two break oop again?” Joel asked, tilting his head, glad to be discussing something other than his rather painful emotional predicament.
“No, course not!” Snorting, Oliver straightened and gave his head an arrogant sort of toss. “Pfft, that Frenchie knows he won’t find a better piece of ass then mine! Wouldn’t dare leave me.” Chuckling, Oliver smirked once again and entertained himself with thoughts of his rather testy boyfriend.
Joel sighed and leaned back in his desk chair, covering his face with his hands. Straining his brain as he had been for much of the morning, he tried to remember exactly what they had fought about, what made them-
“So why’d you split anyway?”
Lowering his hands down to his lap, the red head looked blankly ahead for a minute.
“…She called me an alcoholic… And said my dad’s a dick. My dad is NOT a dick!” Abruptly standing, Joel felt his anger from the night before returning. “And I! Am not a friggen’ alcoholic! I just know how to have a good time!”
Oliver, who had backed away when the red head grew angry, tilted his head to the side.
“She was totally wrong! Aye! Wrong I say! Coompletely outta’er friggen mind! I don’t’ave a bleedin’ problem!” Gesturing furiously as he ranted, Joel slammed his hands down on his desk, the already broken picture frame falling over once again, hiding the once sweet picture from view. “My dad loves me!” Turning to Oliver, he fixed his green eyes on the slightly flabbergasted boy. “Don’t’e!? E’loves me” Reaching out and grabbing a fistful of Oliver’s shirt, Joel hauled him close and stared at him, quivering with emotion. “Oi! Am not a dick! I’M NOT!” Giving Oliver a little shake of desperation, Joel hunched his shoulders, and closed his eyes tight, teeth grit as the argument from the night before flashed before his mind.
“Nope. Definitely not.” Oliver readily agreed, hesitantly patting his friend on the back. He knew what to do in situations like this. Agree with everything they say and it’d all turn out fine. “If anything, Marie’s the %**!% for even suggesti-”
“M’Bonnie is not a %**!%!”
“…I meant… Wrong. Marie is clearly wrong for even suggesting you had such… shitty problems.”
“That friggen’ %**!%!” Throwing his arms up in the air, Joel snarled in rage and frustration, tears leaking from the corners of his eyes. “And then she just oop and LEFT me! She juste’left!”
“I know roight?” Falling quiet, Joel stared at Oliver for a moment, his hands held in front of him, fingers curled and trembling. The blonde stared back, ready for the next burst of rage (and if his arguments with Jean had taught him anything, it was coming).
Instead, Joel turned his head and looked down at his hands, blinking watery eyes.
“She… She left me…” He said quietly in the suddenly silent dorm room. “She left.” Breath hitching, Joel buried his face in his hands.
Oliver, who had been expecting more rage, blinked. He wasn’t quite sure what to do with the suddenly heart broken Nova Scotian. He looked at his friend for a moment, taking in the trembling knees, quivering breaths and shaking shoulders. What was he supposed to do now? He couldn’t just up and agree with him here.
Upon seeing wetness slide down Joel’s wrists, Oliver gave a quiet sigh and stepped forward. Gently he wrapped his arms around his friend and held him close.
“S’gonna be okay, MacKenzie… It’s gonna be okay.”
“Non, Jean… I do not want to take those with me.” Staring at her French friend until he conceded and let the sparkly red stiletto heels fall back to the floor, Marie sighed and looked at the contents of her suitcase once again.
“I do not see why not…” Jean replied, leaning on his hand. He was seated on her bed beside the suitcase, one leg crossed over the other. “For celebrating your victory! Non?”
Marie gave a little chuckle and smiled at him.
“I’ll wait and do my celebrating when I get home.” She told him, pulling the suitcase shut, satisfied she had everything she needed (aside from the things she needed to use before packing them away).
“Ah, dat is perfect~” Jean exclaimed wistfully, hopping off the bed. “Den we can celebrate your victory, together! Non?” Smiling, he grabbed her hands and kissed her fingers. “And you, don’t be worrying about Joel. E’is not’ing more den a foolish little Englishman… Wid a dick father, yes?” Chuckling, Jean watched as Marie looked towards the floor. “Tsk tsk…” Reaching out he lifted her chin and shook his. “None of dat, love. You are better! You do not need him! You are proud! Strong! And beautiful!”
Marie smiled at Jean and nodded.
“Oui… But I…” Looking down again, she pulled her hands from the Frenchman’s hold. “I… Do need to be.. Alone right now Jean… Please Understand.”
The chef nodded and backed away from her. Sweeping out an arm gracefully and holding it over his middle, he gave her a bow.
“But of course, mon cher. Call me if you need me! Oui?” Smiling and blowing her a kiss, Jean quickly took his leave, allowing Marie to have her time alone.
Marie looked at the door, even after it clicked shut, then, turning away from it, she looked at her desk. Walking over, she reached out with a scarred, rough hand towards the picture frame sitting there prettily. It was wooden, decorated with seashells picked up from one of the many beaches in Nova Scotia.
Holding it tenderly, the blonde smiled at the photo. It was of she and Joel, hugging sweetly, beaming smiles at the camera one beautiful autumn day.
She looked at the photo, running her fingers over the glass and smiling a watery smile. But gradually, the smile darkened and fell from her face.
Biting her lip, she pulled open a drawer in the desk and set the picture frame in it, shutting it swiftly.
Crossing her arms, Marie spun around and leaned against the desk, teeth drawing blood from her lip.
“How… Ow’ could he… How could he forget?” She whispered aloud to herself, closing her eyes and tightening her arms, hugging herself. “And then… To just… Kick me out?” Moving backwards, Marie sat down on her bed and glared at the wall with watery eyes. “Joel… vous êtes une tête carrée.”
Outside, the rain continued to fall in Halifax, while fog rolled along the harbour.
AN: I know Jean is kinda out of character. OTL I'M SORRY! I think I was half writing my Francis, half writing him and... ended up with that. *facepalms* LET'S SAY HE WAS IN SHOCK OVER THEIR BREAK UP SO HE WAS ACTING WEIRD? I swear I'll have him (mostly) fixed next chapter. <3