Fräulein Slash (frauleinslash) wrote,
Fräulein Slash
frauleinslash

Pepper: She Loves You, Part One

Name: Pepper - She Loves You, Part One
Fandom: None; original
Series: Pepper
Pairing: Alex/Marco (AU)
Rating: T; some language.
Word Count: 2,010
Summary: It's the summer of 1965, Beatles fever is still in the air, and Alex Ford is a peacock in a sea of pigeons. A new neighbour brings colour to his otherwise black-and-white world for the first time, and his resolution to keep his illegally-inclined heart concealed in a secret scrapbook filled with George Harrison suddenly falls apart.
This Chapter: It was his dad that answered the door – slightly intimidating, because he didn’t seem to like Alex, especially when he turned the charm on. Alex wasn’t used to that; usually people melted whenever he wanted them to.

A/N: Sorry about the crappy formatting of the last section (From Me to You)!  I know it's really hard to read; sorry.  I won't do it like that again. :)

Past Parts:

Love Me Do: One / Two
From Me To You

 

{{S H E   L O V E S   Y O U;;

 

After a night of little to no sleep, Alex wasn’t very prepared for the most important conversation of his life so far, but he supposed it’d be impossible to be prepared for it anyway.  He’d never discussed having feelings for other boys before; he tried to not to think about it a lot of the time, so he didn’t even discuss it with himself.  He had no idea what he was going to say even as he knocked on Marco’s door – knocking at Marco’s window had had no effect so far, but he wasn’t about to give up that easily.  It was his dad that answered the door – slightly intimidating, because he didn’t seem to like Alex, especially when he turned the charm on.  Alex wasn’t used to that; usually people melted whenever he wanted them to.

 

Bonjour, Mr. Santos,” he said, trying – and failing – to make a good impression by  unwittingly using the wrong language.  “Is Marco there, please?”

 

“He doesn’t want to speak to you.”

 

“Aw, c’mon; I can’t explain myself if he won’t let me.  He wouldn’t be angry if I could talk to him.”

 

“Upset, not angry,” he corrected, and began to close the door, but Alex put his foot in it stubbornly.  “He doesn’t want to talk to you, Alexander.”

 

“Better for him if you let me.”

 

Marco’s mam walked across the narrow hallway in front of the door, moving between the kitchen and the dining room.  She said something in Italian, and of course Alex didn’t understand but it sounded somewhat reproachful.  He assumed she was fighting his corner – he liked to imagine she’d reminded her husband about how attractive, thoughtful and funny he was and that such qualities could only be a good thing in a friend for Marco.  Whatever she’d said, Mr. Santos sighed and stood aside.  “In.”

 

“Thank you very much, sir – Mrs. Santos,” he added as he scooted past her and up the stairs to Marco’s room.  He knocked on the door gently, and was met with a tired response; evidently he wasn’t the only one he couldn’t sleep last night.

 

“Don’t come in, Alex.”

 

“Aren’t you decent?”

 

“No.  I haven’t done my hair.”

 

He pushed down on the handle and went in slowly, shutting the door quietly behind him and remaining with his back against it for a moment, feeling awkward.  He hadn’t envisioned his first time in Marco’s bedroom feeling like this.  Marco himself was still in bed, hair at all angles as he’d said, but still unbearably adorable.  The bags under his eyes confirmed Alex’s suspicions about the amount of rest he’d had since yesterday, and he was paler than he was usually.  In fact, Alex would almost say he looked ill.  “Hi.”

 

The covers were pulled up over his head in a movement that managed to look both lethargic and fast.  “Go away, Alex.”

 

“Don’t want to.  I don’t think you want me to either.”

 

“Yes, I do.”

 

“Aw, come on, Marco.”  He scratched behind his ear and fixed the hair he’d disturbed thanks to doing so, trying not to sound defeated.  “Talk to me.  I’m sorry.  You got my note, right?”

 

“You know I did.  I replied to it.”

 

“Well.  No, you didn’t.”

 

The covers came off his head and he looked over at Alex with disdainful curiosity.

 

“You just said goodnight, and, like... I said loads more than that.”

 

Marco blinked, and then looked away.  “You didn’t mean it, though.”

 

Alex pouted.  “Yes, I did.  Do.”  He came over to sit on the end of Marco’s bed uninvited; Marco drew his feet up under the covers so that they weren’t trapped underneath him, looking distinctly uncomfortable – about as uncomfortable as Alex felt, actually.  “I mean it.  All of it.  Marco...”

 

He shook his head and turned towards the window, even though it was still obscured by the plain red curtains.  “To mean it you’d have to not mean what you said yesterday under the bridge, and I’m quite certain you meant that.”

 

“Well, I think I did at the time,” he said sheepishly.  Better to tell the truth, he supposed.  “But... like, I hadn’t thought about it.  It’s just my automatic reaction to get defensive about it, I guess, ‘cos... well, it has to be.  I can’t tell anybody; I’ve never told anybody before.  Nobody knows but you.”

 

Marco pulled his knees up to his chest and held the covers around them – Alex found himself disappointed that he was wearing pyjamas, but tried not to dwell on it.  This wasn’t what he was here for.  It seemed that he was willing to relent, at least for the moment.  “I... mamma knows.  I think padre knows too, even if he hasn’t said anything.  He doesn’t like it, but... well, I’ve never... I’ve never courted anybody, so I don’t suppose he feels he can.”

 

“How did your mam find out?”

 

“I told her.  I didn’t really realise what I was saying at the time... I came home from school crying one day, and I suppose she must have asked what was wrong, so I told her that my best friend had broken my heart.”  He smiled sadly.  “He hadn’t, of course; I was only young.  Eleven, maybe.  I think I told him I loved him and he laughed at me...”  Alex reached out a hand to rest on Marco’s, but the other boy pulled his away, so he withdrew it.  “Don’t.”

 

“Sorry.  But, like... you’ve never been with anybody else before?”

 

“I kissed a girl and I didn’t like it,” he admitted, smiling despite himself.  “I didn’t court her, though.”

 

“You harlot!”

 

Marco blushed and fought the smile away.  “I’m not the one who kissed someone despite courting someone else.”

 

“Oh, Marco, she doesn’t count.  I only call her my girlfriend because otherwise people might... they might guess.  And anyway, you asked me to kiss you!”

 

Maybe that had been the wrong thing to say.  Marco looked down at his knees; drew them further in.  “Yes, and it makes me a bad person.  But you didn’t have to do it; you could have said no.”

 

How could I have said no?” Alex said gently, and for the first time a flicker of doubt crossed Marco’s expression, casting the idea that Alex really might mean what he was saying into his mind.  He moved his hand up to Marco’s knee, hoping that this time he wouldn’t be shrugged off.  He wasn’t, and this combined with Marco’s hopeful silence encouraged him to continue.  “You’re so lovely.  I... thought you were lovely the first time I saw you across the park.”  It sounded so unromantic compared to how it’d sounded in his head, but he bravely continued, if a little brashly.  “You can’t confess these things.  I never have before.  Like, as I said, it’s... well, it’s illegal, isn’t it?  And most people like girls, and if you say something to the wrong person then people will talk, and...”

 

Marco silenced him as he interrupted in the kindest tone Alex had ever heard anybody interrupt with before.  “I understand.”

 

“Well, uh... yeah.”  He scratched the back of his head, lifting his feet up to the bed; he’d already kicked his shoes off, so he didn’t see why not.  “I said what I wanted to say yesterday, in the note.  If you want to re-read it, like, it’ll...”

 

“I already know what it says, Alex.  Do you think I didn’t read it over and over?  Even if I thought it wasn’t true it was nice to read.”

 

He looked up and smiled.  “Obsessive, you are.”

 

“If you like.”

 

“I do.  Like.  You, I mean.  A lot.”

 

“You’re so odd,” Marco said fondly, and Alex looked up to see the perfect smile light up the perfect face.  Overwhelmed, he felt like there was only one response he could give – he slipped forward and ran a thumb over Marco’s cheek gently, smile widening as the other boy’s eyes closed.  “Oh, Alex.  What a mess.”

 

“It’s all back in place now,” he comforted, and closed the gap between them.  This time, he didn’t pull away – not suddenly or ever.  At some point, Marco must have turned them; when he opened his eyes, he was lying on his side with Marco’s face – beautiful, glowing, perfect face – cupped in his hands.  His smile grew to match the other boy’s, and he tipped forward to bump their noses together gently.  “I’ve never kissed anybody like that before.”

 

“Mm,” hummed Marco in agreement, lifting his feet out of the side of the covers to tangle up with Alex’s.  His room was hazy around them, lit up dimly by the light peeking through from the gap in the curtain, desperate to catch their forbidden romance but quite unable to do so; the unusual summer heat ebbed through the walls and added an extra flush to their already-blushing skin.  It felt like last night had never happened – like they’d moved straight from the viaduct to this cosy moment, and like there had never been any disagreement or hurt.  They weren’t to know it wouldn’t last; for the moment they simply smiled at each other.  For Alex, it was liberating; kissing someone like this – or rather, kissing a boy like this – without feeling guilty was a wholly new experience; well, so too was kissing a boy at all if you didn’t count yesterday, and Alex didn’t.

 

“Would this be a good time to tell you I’ve still got your gloves?” he whispered, and Marco laughed quietly, sending currents of warm, happy air to brush gently across Alex’s neck, where his face was aimed.  They slotted together perfectly, Alex noticed, as Marco moved into that space on his shoulder.  “I’m going to take that as a yes.”

 

“You do that,” Marco said into Alex’s shoulder.

 

Seconds later, however, they flew apart at the sound of footsteps coming up the stairs.  Maybe Marco’s mamma knew about his inclinations, but neither of them thought it was a particularly good idea for her to know that they were directed at – and reciprocated by – Alex just yet.  Permitting a concept was one thing; in practice, they weren’t sure she’d approve, and neither of them wanted to chance being held apart.

 

Alex coughed as he leaned awkwardly against the dresser trying to look nonchalant, unsure what to do or say now that the illusion of being all alone in the world had shattered.  “Uh...”

 

They sat in silence for a moment, and then both laughed at the same time.  Thankfully, it wasn’t uncomfortable laughter.  “Look at us,” Marco said, sitting back up again.  “Yesterday we could talk about anything and now we have nothing to say.  You owe me a bag of sweets.”

 

“I do!” Alex said, as if he’d just remembered he’d won the lottery.  “And I need to take Ringo for a walk.  Come with me?”

 

“Okay.”

 

He couldn’t hold back the grin, even though he’d been expecting him to accept anyway.  “Great.  I’ll... I’ll go and get him.  You get ready and I’ll meet you out in... say, twenty minutes?”  Marco raised his eyebrows, and somehow Alex knew what he meant.  Neither of them could manage getting ready in twenty minutes – not if they had to do their hair in that time, too.  “Oh, alright.  You come round when  you’re ready, OK?”

 

“I will.”

 

He stepped over intent on giving Marco a goodbye kiss, but got shy halfway there and ended up bending down awkwardly to kiss the top of his head.  “Um... see you in a bit, then.”

 

Marco was anything but an idiot, but he was certainly grinning like one.  “You’re so easily embarrassed.”

 

“Am not!”

 

“I won’t argue with you; I know I’m right.  You go now or I’ll never be ready, and poor Ringo will never get his walk.”

 

“Alright.  I’ll see you in a little while.”  He walked over to the door and opened it, but turned back to look at Marco before he actually left.  “Bye.”

Part Two

 


 

Tags: original, pairing: alex/marco (a), series: pepper
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