A Torrid Love Through Time
Chapter 1: The Music Box
Disclaimer: Life with Derek is not my own, all characters are inspired by the show.
"De-rek!" Casey exclaimed as she stomped up the stairs.
She was angry, never in her life had she been so humiliated, and Derek had done every prank in the book. This however, she would not accept! She had known long ago that he loved torturing her, and sometimes she couldn't understand why. She saw the way he treated Marty, Lizzie, and any other girl in his life with sweetness and tenderness. Why did he hate her so much?
She breathed heavily as she knocked on his door. "Derek, open this door right now, or I swear I will kick your door down!"
Derek opened his door to find a red cheeked and huffed up Casey. Her eyes were large, the blueness as cold as ice. He smirked, and his eyes twinkled as he regarded her.
"Casey, you better have a good reason why you just woke me up from my nap, must you always be such a drama queen?" He said with annoyance, although his brown eyes lit up as if causing her pain brought him joy.
"Derek, how could you?" She asked as she flared her arms, stepping in closer to him. "Why on earth would you tell Truman that I wasn't good enough for him? How could you tell him that he could find someone that was easier, less uptight and hotter? For once in your life can you butt out of my romantic relationships, and leave me alone!"
Casey was having a hard time fighting tears. She couldn't let Derek see him getting to her. "The worst part is you told him this in the locker room, in front of all these other guys that heard what you said." She saw Derek flinch as she shoved him hard on the chest.
"Woah, Casey, it was only a joke. See what I mean? You are the most uptight person in the entire world. You always take things so seriously," Derek resumed to smirk at her. That smirk makes me want to scream she thought to herself.
Casey moved closer and shoved him on the bed. "You are so selfish, self-absorbed, and a complete idiot. I can't see why any woman would want you. "
Casey was seeing red at this point. She grabbed his lamp and threw it on the ground, it smashed into little pieces. She then grabbed Derek's poster and pulled it off the wall.
Derek grabbed her by the waist and attempted to restrain her, "Casey, what are you doing? Get out of my room Princess, this is my stuff, don't mess with it or I will do the same to your precious books in your room."
Before he knew what he was doing, he pushed Casey up against his wall. He towered over her, his nostrils flaring, his brown eyes locking on hers.
His gaze swept over her. "You need to leave, put down your arms, and accept that you are way too emotional."
Casey found herself breathing erratically, her heart threatening to beat out of her chest. She pushed him away and without a beat went to his sound system.
"Casey-don't you dare!" Derek said, his smirk had left, and he looked terrified.
"Look, Truman would never even listen to what I have to say, he loves you, don't you trust that? " His voice soft and she knew it was just his attempt to get her to calm. But it wouldn't work this time, he wasn't getting out of this again. She grabbed his sound system, and without looking back threw it on the ground.
Derek shrieked, "Casey, out now!"
She turned to face him, her face red and blotchy. Her hair was covering one eye, and despite Derek's anger he just wanted to push her hair back. She walked past him, shoved his shoulder, and walked out of his room.
Casey went to her room and just began to cry into her pillow. Why was it so hard for her to ignore Derek altogether? Life would be so much simpler without him. She thought to herself. Even if Derek was joking with Truman, why would he choose to put me down?
"Casey, Derek, come down NOW", George's voice floated up loudly.
She walked out of her room and saw Derek coming out of his room, but she avoided any eye contact. She knew herself, and knew she would feel guilty since it wasn't in her nature to play dirty like him. She walked into the living room, and saw her mother and George sitting there. Their eyes were wide like saucers.
"Casey and Derek. Edwin came to the basement because he heard things being thrown and breaking and Derek shouting. " George said with a deadpan expression. "This is getting old you two, you are going to university in two months, this is no longer ok. You cannot behave like children!
Nora looked at Casey, studying her composure. "Casey tell me what happened."
Casey finally looked at Derek. He looked serious, no smile, not even that devilish twinkle seemed to exist. Derek hung his head, his shoulders tense.
"Mom, George. I am sorry. Derek told Truman that I wasn't good enough for him. Derek told him I was uptight, and he could have someone hotter than me. He told Truman this in front of all the other guys in the locker room. " Casey said murmured, willing herself to not feel sorry for Derek, she looked at her parents with fierce intensity.
They both gasped and looked at each other and then glared at Derek. "So then, I walked into Derek's room and I found the excuse that he was joking old, and I just couldn't take it anymore!"
She sat down on the couch beside them, and then shyly looked down at her hands. "I got mad and smashed his lamp, ripped one of his posters off the wall, and smashed his sound system. The one he got for an early graduation gift." She could feel her confidence wavering. She knew maybe she overreacted, but it was too late to back peddle.
Derek remained stonily silent. He looked resigned to receive whatever punishment his dad and Nora could come up with. He looked at Casey on the couch, looking down at her hands. He still couldn't shake that feeling of wanting to comfort her, even though she broke his sound system. What was wrong with him? Maybe I went a little far he thought.
"Derek, this thing of you having to always upset Casey is really getting on my nerves. She's your step-sister, she's family, it is NOT okay to embarrass her." George slammed his hand down on the couch for emphasis, "You need to appreciate her more. "
Derek grimaced. "Oh poor little Princess, needs the whole world to bow down to her, and I will not! She's not as perfect as she pretends to be, she always insults me as well!" He crossed his arms. "And her breaking the gift you got me dad, was so out of line!"
George studied Derek. "Maybe, but you are always pushing buttons, Derek, it is time you start acting like a man. Grow up!"
Derek nodded sheepishly, he had no more sarcastic comments, and braved to look at Casey. She met his eyes briefly, before looking away quickly. Not before he saw that flash of anger in her eyes.
Nora put her arm around Casey protectively, and tilted her chin up so she could look at her. "Casey, I understand why you were upset. What Derek said was not okay, and you absolutely had the right to get upset, but destroying his graduation gift, don't you think it was little far?"
Casey breathed in sharply. "How come Derek always win? He always ends up getting what he wants. No matter what he does, everyone always forgives him!" She felt exasperated.
"No honey, I am not defending him. However, you are responsible for how you deal with your anger and what you do. I think you two need to sort this out before you move out of here. Three years living together, and there has been little progress between both of you. Look around you, you are blessed with the life you have. You live in a wonderful country, you have everything you need or want, you have a big family. You are going to university, and you are free to live the life you dream of. There are no barriers." Nora looked at Derek, pleadingly. "One day George and I won't be here, and I would hate to think that you two could never get past your differences and be a family. "
Nora sure knows how to install the guilt trip alright, Derek thought.
"Nora, what do you think of sending Derek and Casey up to the attic and getting them to once and for all figure out how to truly be siblings?" George asked softly.
At the mention of that word both Derek and Casey looked up, and looked physically ill at the concept of ever considering the other a "sibling."
"I mean I think the bottom line is they don't know how to communicate. The time is perfect now." He looked at Nora, and both shared a silent conversation.
Casey shifted uncomfortably on the couch. Derek ran a hand through his hair, trying to seem unphased by their "conversation."
Nora nodded, and looked at them decisively. "I think that would be a good idea. "
"But that's Edwin's room!" Casey's agitation was escalating again.
"Yes, it is, but he is at a friend's house and you need to be away from us because I don't want to hear more shouting." Nora explained, "Just a couple hours. Please do this for us."
Casey and Derek looked at each other. Derek tried to look annoyed, but a small smile crept over his mouth. Casey tried to give him the stare down, but she also softened and returned a little smile his way.
"Okay." They both said at the same time. George and Nora both brimmed with excitement.
"Alright, you two, on your way!" George chirped.
Derek and Casey began to go up, and Derek stops,looking back at his dad. "Dad you will get me a new sound system, right?"He cocked his eyebrow up comically.
George laughed. "Depends on if you walk out of that attic alive."
Derek rolled his eyes and laughed as he followed Casey up to the attic.
Casey turned on the lights of the attic. The room was large, half of it was Edwin's room, and the other half was storage. It had a gloomy feel; she was thankful her room wasn't up here. She'd be looking over her shoulders at every turn. She sat at the far corner of the room and recapped what had just happened. She knew she went too far, but she would use this "punishment" to at least find out why Derek detested her so much.
Derek came in and laughed. "I am going to lie here and go back to sleep, like I want any more altercations with you, Klutzilla. You might break my nose." He plopped down on Edwin's bed. He put his hands behind his head and looked at the ceiling.
"Derek, you are not getting out of this once again. You need to become more civilized," Casey said with a hint of a smile. "One day the world will thank me that Derek Venturi became a real man because of me." She stopped and blushed a little at the double meaning of her words.
He caught it though. "Uhm, yeah right. I am already a man, you just don't deserve to see that side of me. That is reserved for all the other babes on this planet. " Derek said smugly, still not looking at her.
Casey studied him. She thought about the past three years. He always managed to get her to react, and get under her skin, but why? He always seemed to inject himself in to every part of her life, and then there were those little moments. The moments in between the noise and his devilish laughter, where he would do something so unbelievably sweet. Derek is literally an oxymoron, she thought to herself with a smile remembering that one time he didn't know what oxymoron meant and he thought she was insulting him.
"I have a hard time even understanding what any other women see in you. You are like a shallow pool, not much substance." Casey said trying to get him to react. "Either the other women just don't see you for what you are, or they are incredibly dimwitted. " She said with a little laugh.
Derek turned to look at her finally, shifting and propping his head on one arm. "Miss perfect Casey are you really insulting me again?" His wicked smirk returned. "Clearly the world needs protection from such a keener, perfect, goodie-good girl." He raised a questioning eyebrow.
He watched her as she was obviously trying to come up with a quick-witted response. It's one of the reasons he loved tormenting her. She was the only person in his life that would literally challenge him. Behind those insults, Casey is a sweet, intelligent, and beautiful—Derek caught himself and shook his head as he realized where his thoughts were heading.
Casey stood up and moved closer. "You know what Derek?" She asked as realization dawned on her. She had discovered the issue. "I am going to ignore your remarks from now on. I am a strong, independent woman and don't need some idiot's remarks to mess with who I know I am. You will never get a rise out of me again." She said crossing her arms and looked at him seriously.
Derek's smirk left immediately. But he recomposed himself and sat up on his bed.
"Want to make a bet?" He asked with that little twinkle in his eye. "I bet you a sound system in the next couple hours I will make you react. " He smiled broader and added " I know you, Casey Mcdonald, you are the most emotional woman that ever existed, no way you can truly ignore me. It's cute to see you try." He crossed his arms over his chest, and did that tongue movement that always caught her off guard.
"Oh yeah? Well it's so on, Derek! You will buy me a sound system, because I am just naturally smarter than you. I will win hands down, and then I will get the satisfaction of seeing you weep at the loss of two sound systems in one day." She said with a chuckle, and a tone of defiance.
Her blue eyes could not hide the excitement over having a challenge. It was a look that screamed "I can do anything" that made Derek's heart skip a beat. She always surprised him, and he never knew exactly what he would get with her.
Derek offered a hand and said in a low voice, "Want to shake on it? It's so on." Casey smiled and grabbed his hand in agreement.
As they shook hands, they both looked each other in the eye. Derek felt goosebumps, and Casey's cheeks began to pinken a deep shade. They abruptly stopped the handshake, and Casey stepped back.
Casey retreated to her corner. "In order to actually put the bet in motion, we will need to speak to each other. I will show you I am immune to you." She sat down crossing her legs.
Derek nodded, and quickly came up with a way to catch her off guard. He knew Casey better than anyone else, and he had noticed over the past three years that if he was sweet in any way, she would always react strongly.
"Alright, Case, what do you want to talk about?" Derek got out of the bed and sat down in front of her.
Casey looked distraught. "Derek, go back to your spot. I can hear you from there, you do have the loudest voice, after all."
"Not a chance Case, how else will I know If I got under your skin, if I can't see your face? You are the worst liar; your eyes always give you away". He gave her a little wink.
She concealed her nervousness at their proximity with a smirk of her own. "You have absolutely no effect on me, but go ahead watch me all you want, I will not lose."
Derek smiled at her. A real smile, not a smirk. She was caught off guard by it and she looked at him longer than she wanted to.
"Okay fine." She breathed. "Let's talk about Truman, why did you have to tell him all that nonsense?"
His smile left, and she instantly regretted asking him this. She was afraid this question showed she was still affected by those remarks.
"Case, it was only a joke, I promise. " Derek said soothingly. Derek had never used that tone with her. It was serious, his voice velvety. He held her gaze.
"Derek, that's not a joke, it's an insult." She frowned, trying to speak without getting emotional would indeed be a challenge for her.
"Guys are like that, Case. We don't speak our feelings or like to have deep conversations. Speaking through jokes is kind of what is expected of me. I am known around school as a jokester, and mostly everyone knows I don't truly ever mean what I say. Apparently this is evident to everyone, but you of course." Derek leaned in a little closer, studying Casey in the dim light.
Casey was taken by surprise by Derek's honest revelation. "Not all guys are like that Derek, why do you feel the need to always joke? Especially at my expense?" There was a crack in her voice. Oh no Casey, do not show his jokes get to you, don't!
Derek looked down, hiding his expression. "I guess it has just become second nature for me to tease you." He said softly.
Casey's eyes shot up and watched him. Could it be, that Derek was for the first time opening to her?
He continued. "Look Casey, I have fun messing with you. I'll be honest with you. However, I shouldn't have gone that far with Truman." Casey's eyes nearly bugged out of her head, what is happening?
"I am sorry" Derek whispered, then lifted his gaze to her face.
Casey's heart was hammering. What is going on? Her eyes became wide, her mouth gaped open. He kept the eye contact, and she was shocked that she couldn't see that jerkish twinkle in his eyes. Who is this guy?
"Um, you don't mean that. I know you, Derek." She whispered, afraid of the fragility creeping up on her voice.
Derek still did not break the eye contact. It was too much for her, it was like looking at the sun. She couldn't stand this, she looked away fixating on the wall in front of her.
"Yeah, I do." Derek's words enveloped her, she wanted to take his words and put them in a jar and play it over, and over again. She felt her hands shaking.
She couldn't help herself as she asked the next question, it was barely audible. "Did you mean what you told him? That I wasn't good enough for him, do you truly believe that?" Casey could not bear to look at him.
Derek softly nudged her arm, to get her attention back. His brown eyes were like liquid smoke. His lips began to form a smile, and he just looked at her, thinking of how to say the next part.
"Honestly Case, I think you are too good for him." Casey's eyes widened, Derek had never seen her eyes look so huge.
He continued "I've seen the way he ogles other girls, and I think you could do better. A perfectionist like you couldn't be with a guy like him. You are a romantic, you want a brave and chivalrous guy." Casey's mouth hung open further, "And that guy is not Truman."
Derek looked away at this point. He looked at the wall in front of him and the next words made Casey melt like a puddle. "In fact I think there are very few guys that deserve a keener like you. " That playful tone returned.
It didn't matter though, Casey's mind was mush. She acknowledged that all these years she secretly begged for Derek's attention, and with any positive word, her soul would beam for days. And now there he was, telling her perhaps the most beautiful words she had ever heard, and it came from Derek. She fumbled with her fingers, her breath shaky. For once in her whole life her mind was blank. No witty response or intelligent response could be conjured.
"Thanks Derek." She was appalled by the hint of shyness she was feeling.
He turned to her and they looked at each other. A little smile curved on her lips, and he was feeling like the biggest jerk on the planet already using those words to win a bet. He meant them of course he did, he admitted that to himself after that stupid coach Scott came in to the picture and used Casey. He remembered feeling angry, and shocked that anyone could ever think of being unfaithful to Casey.
He closed his eyes, fighting against himself. If he told her this was a "joke" he would win the bet, but he would hurt her deeper than he ever had before. But if he didn't follow through, then he just revealed a part of himself to Casey that would change the way she would view him. She would see him as a "sweet brother" and that thought alone made him want to tear his arm off and throw it.
He felt his heart racing, and putting on his typical Derek smirk, looked at her and said "Ha you bought that? You really are a sucker," he laughed, and fell back on to the floor, clutching his stomach as if he had just said the biggest joke of his life.
Casey's mind, heart, and breathing stopped all at once. She felt her temper rising, boiling over. She stood up as quick as lightning, "Derek I HATE you, you arrogant, stupid, idiotic jerk!" She could feel her eyes welling up with tears.
Derek continued the charade. "Looks like Space-Case owes me a brand-new sound system". He said got up and crossed his arms, smirked at her, and that did it.
Her voice erupted like a volcano. "Derek, I wish you never existed. I wish you were DEAD!" She screamed and she made her way to the door. Derek covered his startled and hurt reaction with a laugh.
"Casey we are locked in here, there's no getting out." His voice regained his typical Derek tone. "So when should we go shopping?"
Casey stomped all around the room, unable to look at him. She could feel the tears leaking out of her eyes, she paced back and forth. She suddenly put her hand in to a fist and banged the wall hard, cracking it open. She put both her hand against the wall, breathing sharply. She lost her cool, and it killed her to know that Derek had won.
She wanted to cry, scream, and break the teeth off that darn smile. She suddenly saw something in the crack she just made. It was a little velvet bag. She reached in and pulled it out. It was the size of her hand, the red velvet smooth in her hands. She heard Derek come up behind her, "What is that?"
Casey ignored him and looked at the bag. There was something in side, she opened it and out came a music box. It looked old. The wood looked a little scratched. There were markings on it, she read it out loud "A Torrid Love Through Time," she read suddenly forgetting the situation she was in with Derek. He took it from her hands and studied it.
"Where do you suppose this came from?" He asked as he studied the words intently.
"Maybe it was the previous owner's? But why would it be hidden in a wall. It looks like an antique." Casey commented. "Open it, let's see if still works." She peered over Derek's shoulder as he struggled to get it open.
"It seems to be stuck. " He tried with all his might to life the top up.
"Maybe it needs a woman's touch." She chuckled softly. She put her hand on top of Derek. He looked at her sharply.
"What are you doing?" He asked in a constricted voice.
"Obviously trying to help you, Derek." She ignored the weird feeling between them and with their hands locked together, they both began to lift the lid. It came up instantly.
There was a golden horse in the center. Beautiful, and small. And suddenly is started to move in little circles, and a haunting melody rang through the cold attic. Derek and Casey stared at each other, both startled. Then there were words, a woman's voice could be heard.
My Love, how could I express this torrid love
I feel every time I look at you
Please let me take your hand
And we will face the fire together
Let's go back to the beginning,
And run away with me, not looking back
As the world judges our Love
I will not let go, you and I belong together
It's a torrid love through time
The voice ended, and the horse stopped spinning. Derek and Casey looked at each other, feeling an intensity growing between them. Then suddenly they both felt their world spinning, and a flash of light went through the whole attic. Derek and Casey closed their eyes, this life completely forgotten.
Casey opened her eyes and she looked down on the bed she was sleeping on. It was a king-sized bed, covered in silk. She rubbed her eyes, feeling she just woke from a dream. She looked around the room, feeling disoriented.
She looked down and saw she was wearing long cotton pyjamas. She got up and heard a knock at the door, "Lady Casey, are you ready for me assist you with your walking dress?"
A voice rang through her room. Casey rubbed her temples, and softly said, "Come in Brenda."