A/N: Shenny-er version of 2x21: The Vegas Renormalization

Disclaimer: Anything recognizable is obviously from the actual episode.


Penny softly finished "Soft Kitty," and looked down at Sheldon, looking so peaceful with his eyes closed.

"Penny," he sighed, eyes still closed.

"Yeah," she replied softly.

"Thank you for letting me stay here."

It nearly broke her heart. He could be such a pain sometimes, but it was moments like this when she remembered why she put up with him, and why she was currently letting him sleep in her bed while she slept on the couch. "Aww, you're welcome sweetie." She continued to look down at him as he closed his eyes again and sighed in contentment.

After a few seconds, he spoke again; "Okay, I'm sleepy now, get out."

And that's why his ass had been precariously close to sleeping in the hall that night.

Normally Penny just rolled with his bossy ways, but occasionally she stood her ground and went junior rodeo on his genius self. That night was one of those times. She'd been happy to let him hang out in her apartment until his door was unlocked, she'd put up with his 'friends with benefits' questioning, she'd graciously offered to let him sleep in her apartment that night (on the couch, of course), and then put up with him usurping her bed, leaving her to sleep on the couch. He had almost managed to redeem himself after she sang 'Soft Kitty' to him, and then he said that. Penny wasn't having any of it. She may not have been able to make him leave her bed, but she sure as hell wasn't sleeping on the couch. So she lay down next to him, with her back towards him (she wasn't that mean, she wasn't going to make him cuddle with her). She wasn't trying to touch him, and the comforter was between, but since he was lying dead in the center of the couch, she couldn't help that her back rested against his side.

"Penny!?" came his voice, almost immediately. She smiled despite herself. This was bound to go well.

"Yes, Sheldon?" she replied nonchalantly, not bothering to open her eyes.

"What are you doing?"

"I'm trying to sleep, which is what you're supposed to be doing as well."

"Yes, but why are you in here?"

"Because I'm not sleeping on the couch."

"But I'm sleeping here."

"Uh huh."

"We can't both sleep here."

"Feel free to move, then."

Sheldon mumbled something under his breath, but didn't get up.


The following morning, Penny woke up feeling more rested than she had in a long time. She snuggled up closer to the warm body next to her, and gave a slight squeeze as she settled her head more comfortably on his chest; she could lie here all—

Holy crap on a cracker!

She remembered exactly who it was sharing her bed with her. This will not be good if he wakes up! She slowly began to extract herself from him, trying her hardest not to wake him.

"Morning, Penny."

Crap

Not only was he awake, he had obviously been so for a while. She gave up her attempts to move, and fell back the inch she'd made it before he spoke. "Morning, Sheldon," she replied in a defeated voice. If anything was going to get her permanently banned from 4A, this would certainly be it. Although it was her room, so maybe Sheldon would stop coming over?…No, that was far too hopeful.

"I do believe you were in the processing of getting off me."

"Right. Of course," she replied, as she rolled over on her back, trying to touch him as little as possible. They lay there in silence for several minutes. "So what do you eat for breakfast today?" she asked, breaking the silence before things became awkward (oh, who was she kidding, things were already as awkward as they could possibly be).

"Normally cereal, but considering you have to sneak into our apartment to get milk every time you eat cereal, and our apartment is currently locked, I doubt that is going to happen."

They relapsed into silence, before Penny finally said, "I could make French toast, but you didn't seem too thrilled the last time I did that."

"That's because it was oatmeal day, and I was capable of having oatmeal. Today would seem to be an exception, for while it is cereal day, I am in no way capable of having cereal this morning."

She took this to mean yes on the oatmeal, and decided not to bring up the fact that the grocery store was not too far away, and if he was willing to wait a while longer, he actually could have cereal. What he hasn't thought of can't hurt him, she thought to herself. Instead she sat up on the edge of the bed. Looking down, she saw that her robe had somehow found it's way onto the floor during the night. Apparently the same way she had somehow found her way under the sheets during the night. She was too lazy to pick it up and put it on, though, so she got up and headed into the kitchen without it. It's not like Sheldon hadn't seen her in the clothes she slept in before, what with the number of times he'd knocked on her door at an ungodly hour of the morning (and the times she'd gone across the hall to steal breakfast).

A few minutes later Sheldon walked into the kitchen, just as Penny was putting the pan on the stove.

"I believe you left this," she heard him say. Looking around, she saw he was carrying her robe.

"Oh, you can just throw it on the couch." She smiled to herself as she watched him pause for a few seconds, before finally neatly folding her robe and placing it on the top of her couch.

Soon enough they sat down at her small table, a plate full of French toast between them, plates for each of them, and a knife and fork for Sheldon. Penny preferred just picking them up and eating them, and though Sheldon's eye twitched every time she grabbed one from the center plate, he said nothing.


After breakfast, Penny took a shower while Sheldon cleaned up their plates. And her kitchen. And her living room. By the time she returned, Sheldon was sitting on the couch watching reruns of Doctor Who, surrounded by a room that hadn't been that spotless since he snuck in during the middle of the night to clean.

Penny plopped down on the couch next to Sheldon, not bothering with how much she bumped up against him. Sheldon glared at the tv screen for a few seconds, but apparently her inadvertent physical contact was slightly less important than the Doctor and Clara. Penny had always loved 12, and sat watching almost as enraptured by the episode as Sheldon. However, when the 10th Doctor came on in the next episode (seriously, tv channel, who mixes up the order of Doctor Who, she thought to herself), she began to lose interest.

The next thing she knew, she awoke to find herself lying on the couch with her head in Sheldon's lap, the tv off, and Sheldon reading the only magazine apparently within reach; some fashion magazine she knew he couldn't possibly be enjoying. "Sheldon?" she said cautiously.

"Ah, finally, you're awake. If you don't mind, I really must get up now," he replied. She sat up, and Sheldon immediately jumped up and headed towards the direction of her bathroom.

Apparently he can use someone else's bathroom if he really needs to, she thought, immediately followed by, Wait, did he stay like that just to avoid waking me? She didn't have much time to think about it though, as he soon returned. "You do know you could have woken me up, right sweetie," she said as he sat back down.

"You looked comfortable," he replied, looking at his shoes, "and considering how much I'm intruding in your life right now, I didn't want to inconvenience you."

"Ah, Sheldon, that's so sweet of you," and without thinking, her hand found it's way onto Sheldon's cheek. The shock of feeling her hand on his cheek caused him to look up, straight into her eyes. After a moment of silent staring, her eyes gazing on him sweetly, his in complete shock, she broke the awkward situation. With an even more awkward one. She began to slowly caress his face with her thumb, leaving the rest of her hand planted on his cheek where it was.

Struggling to maintain his composure (or what little of it he had left), Sheldon slowly got out, "I understand this is normally appreciated, if not even craved, by guys, but how is rubbing your hand across my face in any way enjoyable?"

"Oh, because of what generally follows it," she purred, shifting ever so slightly closer to him.

"And, what comes next?" he stuttered, the terror in his eyes growing, as if he knew what did in fact come next. Her thumb found it's way to his lips, and gently ran back and forth over them.

Where the hell is this coming from, Penny thought to herself, as she smirked up at him. Has it really been so long since I had a date that I'm trying to seduce Sheldon!? But her body was paying no heed to her brain, as she shifted even closer to him, and her hand move slightly behind his head. "You really want to know why guys typically like this?" she said in her most sultry voice. Sheldon stuttered, but he did not pull away from her. She slowly closed the gap between them, lifting her head as she pulled his down towards her, all the while waiting and expecting for him to push her away. But their lips finally met, and she pressed her soft lips against his rigid ones. After a few seconds, she pulled away and dropped her hand, looking up at him expectantly, their faces still close.

"I still fail to see the enjoyment."

"That's because you aren't trying," she replied, rolling her eyes. "Anyway, that wasn't exactly what anyone would call enjoyable. You have to put some passion into it! Like this," she said, throwing all caution to wind, and reaching up and kissing him hard, one hand behind his head, and the other on his shoulder. After a few shocked seconds, Sheldon finally began to soften into the kiss a little. While she couldn't exactly say he was kissing her back, he at least wasn't completely rigid anymore. Baby steps, she thought to herself. When they finally broke apart, Sheldon's fingers reached up and grazed his lips. "What a curious sensation," he mumbled to himself.

"It's even better if you participate," she replied with a sly grin. She suddenly swung herself into his lap, pinning him to the couch beneath her. With her face now above his, she leaned down towards him. "Now try kissing back this time," she instructed, as her lips met his for the third time. After an initial few seconds where it seemed that his lips were permanently frozen in place (which she contributed mostly to his shock from having her suddenly sitting in his lap), he slowly began to kiss her back. In the time it took for his lips to match hers, several thoughts flittered through her mind. The two biggest ones were 'why am I teaching Sheldon how to kiss?' and 'why am I even kissing him in the first place?'. Her brain failed come up with a suitable answer to either question (ok, it didn't come up with any kind of answer whatsoever, suitable or otherwise), but her lips continued to ignore her brain.


After several more 'lessons', she was quite confident Sheldon knew how to kiss. Her swollen lips could attest to that. He wasn't up to the level of kissing with his mouth open, yet, but she figured if she could just get him over his fears of sharing saliva, he would quickly learn that as well. She rolled back off of him and resumed her previous place on the couch next to him, with a smirk on her face. "Finally figure out why people like kissing?" she teased.

"I must admit that the experience was rather pleasurable, despite how unsanitary it obviously is," he replied, shuddering slightly.

Penny just rolled her eyes, and hopped up off the couch. Walking into the kitchen, she rested her elbows on the counter, her head propped up in her hands, and looked at Sheldon. He was too absorbed in his own internal battle between germs and kisses to notice her staring at him, lost in her own world of thought.

The last thing she wanted right now was a friends with benefits situation, even if the only benefits were kissing. But at the same time, she really had enjoyed their kisses, and by the end Sheldon had actually gotten pretty decent, especially considering the fact she was sure it was the first time he had ever kissed (or been kissed by) a girl. And while she couldn't explain for the life of her why she had done it in the first place, she knew she would miss it if that was it. And she didn't really feel like hunting for a new boyfriend right now, either. Which left her in something of a bind.

She could pretend it never happened, and go back to her dreary, boyfriendless life. She could try the friends with kissing benefits route, but she had no clue if Sheldon would go for that, or if she could even do it if he did. She could go look for a real boyfriend, or, heaven forbid, try dating Leonard again. But none of those options sounded particularly appealing. A fourth option kept popping up in her mind, and no matter how much she tried to ignore it, it kept coming back until she finally acknowledged it; she could ask the whack-a-doodle out. It avoided any guilt issues of friends with benefits, and while she doubted that it could ever really work out, it beat the pathetic existence her life currently was. As far as the inevitable breakup was concerned, if there was anyone she could go back to being friends with after a breakup, it would certainly be Sheldon. He didn't know the social norms well enough to know that things were supposed to become awkward between them following a breakup, and would most likely settle back into being friends quite easily. Now she just had to figure out how to convince Dr. Whack-A-Doodle to date her.

"Sheldon, sweetie, you know how we hang out a lot?" she began. He looked up at her, his internal debate between germs and kisses momentarily pushed aside.

"Yes. We are friends. I believe that is part of being friends."

"And you like spending time with me?"

"Your presence is more bearable than most."

"Would you be willing to spend more time with me, specifically one-on-one?"

"For what purpose? Kissing?"

"Well, partly. But also things like going out to eat together or to the comic book store or shopping, watching tv and movies together, or just talking about our days."

"But why would you care about my day? You can't understand anything I do."

"True, but that doesn't mean you can't tell me how it went. I can't understand what you do, but you can still tell me if you made any progress, or if you have any new ideas. Things like that."

"But why would you care?"

She had known it was a long shot for him to realize on his own that she was trying to ask him to date, but even her patience was wearing thin. He was never going to get there if the discussion continued like this. So she decided to switch gears and go with the direct, blunt approach. It was much more Sheldon-like, anyway.

"Sheldon, honey, I'm asking you out on a date."

"Then why didn't you just ask that?"

"Would you have said yes if I had?"

"No."

"That's why I didn't ask. I was trying to show you that you would be okay with being my boyfriend, before asking you if you would be."

"But you didn't mention coitus in your list of things you wanted to do. I thought that was a requirement for your boyfriends."

Well, he certainly pays attention to my life, that's for sure.

"Well, yes, that is normally part of the relationships I'm in, but in this case, I think we could stick with just kissing." At least to start with.

"But why me? Why not Leonard, he clearly wants to have coitus with you."

"First off, stop calling it coitus. Secondly, I don't want a boyfriend just to have sex with. I want someone who actually cares about me for me, not just how I look."

"But…" he whined, "what's in it for me? You know I have no interest in that kind of thing."

"Well, there's of course the kissing, which you seemed to enjoy. And someone to take you to work or the comic book store even if Leonard can't. And you would never have to worry about whether I'd be on your Halo team or not…"


Later that day, Leonard returned from Las Vegas. When he walked into their apartment, he was surprised not to see Sheldon anywhere. "He must have gone to the comic book store or something," he said to himself. Despite the enjoyableness of not having Sheldon around, after a few hours he began to feel slightly guilty, and decided to ask Penny if she'd seen him. He walked across the hall to 4B, and knocked on the door.

"Yes?" he heard her reply, so he opened the door and started to walk in. But after one step, he froze. Penny was glaring at him, but that wasn't the reason he stopped dead, or the reason a shell-shocked look overtook his face; or, at least, it was only half of the reason. The other half of the reason was lying beneath her on the couch. If Leonard hadn't known any better, he would have thought he had interrupted them making out. But that couldn't be true. Because the person lying beneath her was Sheldon. There had to be some kind of explanation. Other than the obvious one where Penny was snogging his robot of a roommate. Although Penny's glare did suggest otherwise.

"Sorry, am I interrupting something?" he asked in his irritatingly smug voice, sure this wasn't really what it looked like.

"What does it look like to you!?"

Panic began to spread through Leonard. "But, it's…" he stuttered, pointing towards his roommate.

"Yes, I'm making out with Sheldon. Now scram!"

Leonard quickly shut the door and scurried back across the hall, too dumbstruck to even think straight. "What the hell is going on?!" was all his mind could put together.


That evening was pizza and Doctor Who night, but Leonard completely forgot about it until Howard and Raj knocked on the door five minutes till their normal meeting time.

"So, where's the pizza?" asked Howard, after looking around and seeing no pizza or Doctor Who start screen on the tv.

"Oh, right," said Leonard, finally remembering pizza night. "Well, you see…" he began, before pausing. What exactly was he supposed to say? That the only time he'd seen Sheldon all day was when he caught him and Penny kissing in her room? But before he could decide what to say, the door opened and Sheldon and Penny walked in, carrying pizza boxes.

"Oh good, there you are," said Howard, grabbing the pizza boxes out of Sheldon's hands and carrying them over to the table.

At the same time, Sheldon saw the lack of Doctor Who on the tv screen, and said, "Leonard, why isn't Doctor Who ready?"

"Oh, I, uh, wasn't sure if that was still happening, given, um…" Here he flicked his eyes towards Penny, who was still standing next to Sheldon.

"It's pizza and Doctor Who night. What does Penny and I being together have to do with that?"

At these words, Howard and Raj suddenly started paying attention to the conversation.

"What is this I hear?" asked Howard, sliding up beside them. "Did the words 'Penny', 'Sheldon', and 'together' just get used in the same sentence without any sarcasm or threat of bodily harm?"

Rather than bothering explaining, Penny reached up and kissed Sheldon. If they weren't surprised enough by the fact Sheldon hadn't fled at a speed nearing that of light (in a vacuum, of course), they certainly were when Sheldon's arms went around her and he kissed her back. After a few seconds, they broke apart and Sheldon headed towards the tv to put on Doctor Who, while Penny casually walked over to her spot on the couch and plopped down, as though nothing out of the ordinary had just occurred.