They were very, very drunk; and Elphaba, who was normally quite good at handling herself, had had as much as, or more than, he had. She was giggling uncontrollably and smiling at him. Neither of them could remember anymore how they got separated from the others and found themselves strolling hand in hand through the park. After a few minutes, they began getting bad looks from park security and they decided to find somewhere else to chat.
"Let's go back to my dorm room. I don't have a roommate, so we can talk there. Something tells me that if we stop this conversation right now, we won't have another like it again; and I like this, this talking and laughing with you." Fiyero still managed to stand tall, always keeping his dignity and grace, even when he was otherwise drunk.
Elphaba accepted, surprisingly, and followed Fiyero into his dorm. It was an elegant room (well of course, he was a prince, after all). Vinkus silk scarves hung on the walls and the pillows on the bed were made of soft velvet. She sat down on the bed, pleased to find that it was comfortable. He sat down next to her, telling himself to resist the temptation to kiss her.
"What do you want to talk about?" He asked her.
Suddenly, looking at him, she didn't want to talk so much anymore. Her eyes blazed and he couldn't help but kiss her. She was responsive and allowed him to slide his hands onto her hips. He could feel that she loved his touch, that she reveled in his affection.
"Elphie," He looked at her adoringly. "I think I…"
"Shhh." She cut him off, taking the initiative to kiss him. This time, he pulled her back onto the comfort of the bed. Before they realized (or cared) what was happening, Fiyero had begun to undo the metal clasps of Elphaba's black dress, tugging it off of her eagerly. Elphaba had unbuttoned his white cotton shirt, kissed each tattooed blue diamond on his chest and let her hands roam.
The next thing they knew, they were completely nude on his bed, excepting the Vinkus scarf that he had grabbed and tied around her waist. Fiyero was panting as he and Elphaba played teasing games with the scarf, knowing that what was going to happen couldn't be put off for much longer. Curiosity would soon bring them together.
Fiyero was exploring her emerald body with his hands when she moaned softly. At that moment, he wanted her and he wanted her more than just very badly. The moan had instilled a desire in him that could not be restrained. With a loving glance into Elphaba's hazy dark eyes, he slid inside of her.
Her body almost jolted, groping and searching. Her back arched to him and she moved beneath him, heightening the pleasure. Together they slipped into a deep, untamed drunken bliss.
The first thing she noticed that was out of the norm was the soreness (though it tingled almost pleasantly, too) between her legs; it felt like her calf muscles did when she walked too much, a good, but achy feeling… Then she noticed the sunlight. The dorm room she and Glinda shared had small windows and they never got so much sunlight. Next, she realized she wasn't clothed. She had no nightgown on, nothing at all. But the last and final realization was that she was not alone in the bed.
Fiyero had already woken a few moments before. They looked at each other, the same thought hitting them at the same time. Elphaba held the blanket to herself protectively; ashamed of her nudity for some ridiculous reason, for she was sure he'd seen enough of her the night before. Fiyero sat up, staring at Elphaba. She said, "Pinch me and wake me up. Tell me that we didn't do what I think we did last night."
"You don't remember, do you? I can't really remember, either. Well, we were drunk, that explains that much. But think for a minute. Do you feel like we… you know? It certainly looks like we did."
"Shit." She searched the room with her eyes, trying desperately to find her clothes. If she was ever going to get back to her own dorm without getting caught on her way out of his, she'd need to be clothed, obviously. "I can't believe this."
He wasn't regretting it nearly as much as she was. Trying to ease the tension, he said, "Hey, it could've been worse."
"You could've ended up in bed with someone you find really disgusting or someone you hate. I mean, imagine if I was Avaric."
"Don't even say that." She took a deep breath. "Fiyero, you're married, you idiot! And we're what, nineteen? Twenty? This is wrong. This is very, very wrong."
"Wait a second! First of all, I'm not really married yet, not technically. And the girl I'm 'married' to is some random tribal girl that my parents decided on who I have only seen once. I don't exactly love her."
"It doesn't change the fact that you're going to be married!" She sighed. "Oh, no. Tell me we weren't stupid enough not to have been careful."
He looked at her guiltily. "I'm pretty sure we weren't careful… but don't take my word for it, I don't remember much, either."
"I could end up pr…"
"Elphie, calm down."
"How can you tell me to calm down? We weren't smart. We weren't safe."
He moved to put an arm around her, realizing only then that, even sober, he had feelings for her. "It's all right. We'll handle this."
"Fiyero, I don't care what this is in your eyes, but to me, you're already married. And look at our situation. I'm in your dorm room, where, mind you, I'm not supposed to be. I should be in my own dorm room, but that's in a completely different building. Oh, and let's not forget that last night, as best as we can guess, we had unprotected sex. How, exactly, do you think we're going to handle this?"
There wasn't anything for him to say. He simply kept his arm around her tightly, thankful that there were no classes in the last few days of the term. Eventually, though, she would be missed or there'd be a room check. Jokingly, he said, "I wonder who made the first move. I don't remember."
Elphaba, who believed that no one, certainly not Fiyero, would want her in any way, said, "It was probably me. You didn't stop me, but that doesn't matter. I have a habit of getting myself into the worst situations. What in Oz did I get myself into now? And get you into, too?"
"No, Elphie. I think I made the first move. I know I was the one who got you drunk, anyway."
"It doesn't matter who did what, not now."
"It does kind of bother me that we don't even get the benefit of a nice, good memory of it." He tried to laugh good-naturedly.
She gazed at him, the diamonds on his face bringing her to think about the ones on his neck that went down to his chest… she'd seen that much the night before, she realized, and probably a lot more. As angry and upset as she was about their situation, when she looked at him, her eyes couldn't leave his body. He wasn't ashamed of himself the way that she was. His skin and everything else that made him so different to everyone else were nothing to him. Yet, she was still afraid to let him see her.
They lay quietly in that same position, still under the blanket, not having moved at all except for Elphaba's head resting on Fiyero's chest, both of them thinking about where they were headed from there. Elphaba was right, Fiyero realized, he technically was married, though he really had only seen her once, and by accident no less. Fiyero began to wonder how strict the Arjiki custom of arranged marriage was, exactly. Could he convince his parents, not to mention the tribe, to allow him the choice? And, even if he got that far, could he convince them to let him choose someone who was not an Arjiki? He wanted to be with Elphaba, though he'd only just realized he truly cared for her.
As Fiyero thought about this, Elphaba was scorning herself. It had been one thing to stare, to touch his hand, even to let him kiss her, for such things were pretty much harmless. But now they'd taken it as far as it could go, and that was way too far. Yet, if it was too far, why was she putting off getting up and leaving?
"Elphie, my Elphie," he mumbled into her hair, "I honestly do want to be with you, so much that it aches. You could never even comprehend the things I'd do just to be with you."
"No. You don't want me. And if you do, or think you do, you want me for all the wrong reasons," she told him.
"What are those reasons, if you think you know so well?"
"You don't know any better," she replied despondently, "And you want me because, like you, I'm different. Of course, there's always the chance you only want me because of the fact that we had sex last night…"
"I wouldn't do that."
Elphaba raised her eyebrows and blatantly pointed out where they were.
"We were drunk. But Elphaba…"
"We still had sex."
Her words were cold and simple. It almost seemed as if the word "sex" was too straightforward, too vulgar. "Can we rephrase that as 'made love', please?"
She couldn't help but adore his naïveté and tiredly, she nuzzled her head against his chest and murmured, "Whatever you want."
That settled it, at least for him. "I love you."
Her heart pounded rapidly. No one had ever used those words in her presence and directed them straight at her. "Fiyero, don't say that."
"But I do love you, Elphie."
"Right. Even if that were the case, which it is not, I don't know what there is for me to say to that."
He just looked at her, drinking in the sight of her, or the little of her shoulders that he could see. She was correct in saying that he loved her because she was different. The green skin made her who she was and he loved her for who she was. He knew she only pretended to be so cold, and that something inside of her didn't truly want to reject everyone. "Elphie, if there is any possible way for me to get out of this damned arranged marriage custom, I will, for you."
Her eyes were big, soft, and caring, but she shook her head. "No, Fiyero. Your path in life has been set out for you. We have been given different paths in life for a reason."
He noticed, then, that she seemed to care about him as much as he did about her. Why was she being so resistant? "And our paths crossed, and that was for a reason, too!"
"But you don't love me. Our paths crossed because we got drunk, Fiyero. Things like this happen and not all of them have reasons."
She'd been in his room for a while, and she'd already been gone much too long. She did have to leave. After making him look away as she got dressed and opening the window to climb out (thank Oz that Fiyero was on the first story), he kissed her goodbye. "I love you."
She looked at him, a forlorn, lonely look in her eyes, and shook her head. "We both wish that you were telling the truth, Fiyero. But that doesn't mean that you are." Heart sinking, she hurried back to her dorm, leaving Fiyero to stare out his window as it hit him that she'd just admitted that she wanted him to love her.
Glinda was waiting, her hands on her hips, when Elphaba got in. "Elphaba! Sweet Oz, we've been looking everywhere for you."
"You have not been looking everywhere, because if you'd looked everywhere, you would have found me."
"Very funny, Elphie. Where have you been? You're a mess! Look at this, your dress is lopsided and I'm not even going to start about your hair…"
"Glinda, I thought you of all people would know, looking like a mess is the latest fashion." But Glinda was right. Her sleeve was halfway rolled up on the right side and her tights were bunched at the left knee. And Glinda was definitely correct about her hair.
"Listen, Elphie. Madame Morrible has no idea that you've been gone. Ama Clutch does, but she won't immediately report it to Morrible. If you don't tell me where you've been," Glinda said in a huff, "I will tell Morrible myself."
Elphaba was horrified; she had no idea what to say to such a thing. "I… oh, Glinda, if I told you, you'd think I was crazy and delusional. And, yes, I've been missing for a little over twelve hours and I may get in trouble for that. But the trouble I could get into for where I was and what I was doing makes any other punishment I could get look almost lenient."
"Why can't you just tell me? I won't report it if you tell me. I can keep a secret."
"So can I. And it's not just my secret to keep."
"Not just your secret? Elphie, what could you possibly have been doing that involved other people?"
"No, Glinda, I will not tell you. I can't tell you what I was doing, who I was with or where I was. I'd tell you what I was doing, but I know you'd demand to know at least who was with me."
"Please don't make me do this, Elphie. I don't want to have to report you to Madame Morrible. Just tell me what you were doing and I won't ask anymore questions, I promise."
"This is one promise you are going to hate keeping, that's for sure. After I tell you, you'll freak out at me. But if you promise not to say a word and no more questions and you really mean it, I guess I'd have to tell you."
"I promise." Glinda raised her right hand like she was taking an oath. The look on her face was so serious that Elphaba had to bite her lip until it bled just to keep from laughing.
She took a deep breath and began her explanation. "Last night when we left the café, we were all a little tipsy, right?"
"Just a little."
"I was tipsy enough to drink more later on when I was alone with someone who I felt comfortable with. And we were drunk and we, well…"
"Out with it."
"We did it." Elphaba couldn't believe the confused, oblivious look on her roommate's face. "We did it. As in: we had sex."
Glinda burst out laughing in a very unladylike manner. "Right, and I was out buying ugly clothes!"
"You bought new clothes?"
"Elphaba, come on, tell." She met Elphaba's eyes and stepped back. "Oh, sweet Oz, sweet Oz, sweet Oz, you're serious, aren't you?"
Elphaba nodded solemnly.
"You and this mystery lover were how drunk?"
"Really drunk. But, Glinda, if you knew the confusion and mess I've gotten myself into with this boy… this man," Fiyero was, after all, above eighteen and therefore a man; and she certainly saw him as a man after the previous twenty-four hours, "I wish you could understand, I really do. But he and I aren't supposed to be together; it's against a million rules. It'd never work out." Looking at Glinda's face, she said, "Fine, fine, ask your questions. Just no asking who or where, all right?"
"All right. You've never done this before and just haven't told me or something like that, right?"
Sarcastically, Elphaba replied, "Oh, yeah, sure, I do it all the time. Glinda, no! You know I have more sense than that… oh, I know, now I don't, but I'm usually more sensible than that."
"You did use some form of protection, right?"
Elphaba stared at the ground, fighting panic. "This is where it gets kind of bad, isn't it?" She leaned against the wall and sank down, hugging her knees. She hid her face and tried to calm her nerves.
"Elphie! Don't do that, please." Glinda had never seen anything make Elphaba so anxious and upset. She rushed over to her friend and crouched down to her eye level. "It's very unlikely that you're pregnant. You only did it once. I just… I can't believe that you, of all people…"
"I'm not as antisocial as you think I am, Glinda. We all get overexcited every once in a while. I can't help that I fell for someone. If you saw him…you have no idea…" But didn't Glinda have some sort of idea? She knew Fiyero. Suddenly Elphaba was seeing the dark, ochre skin; those marvelous blue diamonds in the back of her eyelids. Knowing she couldn't truly have him made her ache.
Glinda knew who it was. It had to be. She saw the way that Elphaba looked at him. "Elphie, oh, come here." She hugged Elphaba. "It's not good. I understand. But why in Oz…? Well, I know why, but didn't anything in the back of your mind tell you that it was wrong? The thought never crossed your mind that you knew that there was no way you could be together? Elphie, he can't choose you whether he wants to or not."
Elphaba looked up, confused. Did Glinda know?
"Look, I don't want to sound rude, Elphie, but does Fiyero actually care? Would he rather be with you than the girl his parents have chosen?"
"He said…" Elphaba was shocked. "You knew it was Fiyero?"
"Yes. Ha! I knew it! I knew you liked him!"
"Glinda, shut up! Don't even think about saying another word."
"Does he love you, though?"
Elphaba repeated most of her and Fiyero's earlier conversation, wishing she could believe it.
Glinda was still getting over the fact that Elphaba had gotten further than she had. Her green, unfashionable, smarmy roommate had just had sex and Glinda had only kissed a boy. This was a strange turn of events. All the same, she tried to comfort Elphaba. "Well, maybe there is hope. He said he wanted to find a way out of that marriage. Maybe his parents will be reasonable enough to let him choose who he wants to marry."
"Even if they did, they probably wouldn't approve of the green-skinned freak."
"He told you he'd do what he could, Elphie. Maybe it'll work out, hope, Elphie. Give it a chance."
Chances. Fiyero sat at the desk in his room, thinking to himself. He knew he would take the throne. But, if he was allowed to marry a non-Arjiki, would his son after be allowed to do so? It didn't matter. He had three brothers, and they'd all have children eventually. Hell, one of them could marry the girl that he was supposed to marry. They could even share that damned castle, if that did him any good. He was in the end of his third year in college, shouldn't he be allowed the right to make his own choices?
He sighed and propped his head up on his arm. Summer would begin soon, and he would be going home. Perhaps he could discuss the issue of the marriage with his parents then.
The calendar on the wall said that there were two days until they were officially out. But he hadn't crossed off the previous day like he normally did every night before bed; he'd been a bit distracted…
His eyes drifted towards the bed. Elphaba, Elphaba, Elphaba, Elphaba… He didn't know how he would be able to sleep in that bed and stay sane. It smelled like her and it smelled like sex and passion and love and everything good that she represented to him, even if he couldn't fully remember. There was no way to avoid thinking about it; he could practically taste her kiss. Was she remembering him this way?
He doubted it. Their lovemaking had bothered her, it had scared her. He supposed it was because it was too far out of line for her. Not only had they both grown up being told that sex before marriage was wrong, but they couldn't even get married if they wanted to, anyway. Well, he did have all summer to convince his parents to forget about the tradition. Then, he hoped, such things wouldn't bother her and she'd actually allow herself to be loved.
Suddenly, he remembered that he was supposed to have met their group of friends at the café in approximately ten minutes. How would his Elphie act?
Quickly, he scribbled a note to give her.
Elphie, we need to talk. I'm leaving to go home for the summer tomorrow afternoon. Meet me outside the park (you know the one) at 11pm, please… I beg you. There a lot of things I need to say to you before I leave. Once again, my sweet Elphie, I love you. But I've said that many times and I hope to have the chance to say it many more. I will not sign this; I believe you know whom it's coming from. Who else would be daring enough to call himself your Prince Charming?
He thought the last line and the pun on his royalty to be a bit witty and was proud of himself for the cleverness. He grabbed his coat, stuffed the note in his pocket and almost jogged over to the café.
The atmosphere at the table was giddy. Everyone was laughing and toasting to everything. It seemed like everyone was happy – well, everyone except for Elphaba. She was unusually quiet and would not meet his eyes. He found it surprising how fragile and vulnerable she looked. It made him want to hold her as he had before. Poor Elphie, he thought, stuck in the middle of a booth, two or three people on either side of her. He'd wanted to sit next to her, but maybe it was best that he didn't; people talk. Instead, he took a chair next to the one across from her, in which Boq was sitting. She still looked away.
Glinda was looking at him strangely, almost disbelievingly. Had Elphaba told her? She was Elphaba's friend and roomie, after all, and she'd apparently made sure to sit next to Elphaba. He caught Glinda's eye and smiled lightly; she smiled back, but it was a sort of knowing smile. But that was all right. If Elphie had confided in Glinda, then she must know that her secret would be kept in confidence. He turned his gaze again to Elphaba, who was staring at her hands folded in her lap. Her eyes flicked upwards once, saw him looking at her, and stared down again.
Fiyero met Glinda's glance and mouthed, "You know, don't you?"
She gave him a curt, somewhat disapproving nod.
He gave Glinda an imploring look and then stood up. "I'm going to walk around the building once or twice. It's stuffy in here and I need some fresh air." Casually, he stepped outside, waiting for Glinda to find her excuse.
"So, you got her drunk, slept with her and now what? Use her some more until you get bored? Marry your arranged bride and keep her on the side for a good time?" Glinda's words were bold. They began to stroll around the building.
"Is she all right?"
"She's upset with herself, not with you. I think she actually loves you."
"Why is she avoiding me? She won't look at me."
"She doesn't know how to act around you in public now, that's why. Personally, I'd question your feelings for her."
He stopped walking. "Listen to me. I love her. And I mean that. Admittedly, I didn't realize exactly how much I loved her until this morning, but I do love her. You can never even understand the way it's tearing me apart to think that I can't be with her if I don't figure something out." He sighed.
"All right, then. I was just making sure. Take no offense."
"Anyway, regarding your situation, what are you going to do if she ends up pregnant because of your little adventure?"
"You know everything, don't you?"
"No, but if you think that isn't nagging in the back of her mind right now, then you really don't know anything about women."
"If she did end up pregnant, then I'd have no choice but to tell my parents that I slept with a girl at college, got her pregnant and have to marry her. They'll yell. And worse, the fact that she slept with me before marriage will make them frown on her. I'd rather not have to do that."
"I can see where you're coming from."
"Look, Glinda, I'm going to do my best this summer to talk my parents into some sort of agreement so they'll let go of that tradition, and I'm going to do it for her. Because I want her – and only her. If I were to get through that obstacle, though, would she even consider being with me?"
"I think she'd want to. However, I'm not so sure that she would let herself. She does care for you, that much I can tell. But Elphie is a stubborn one, and I don't think she's used to getting any affection at all, and it might unnerve her, to say the least. I can tell you, though, that she does want to be with you. Whether or not she would isn't something I can tell you for sure."
"Thank you. I guess that's about all I can ask that'll do me any good at this point. You go back in. I'll make my inconspicuous entry in a minute or two."
As they all said their goodbyes (most of them for the whole summer), everyone hugged one another. When Fiyero hugged Glinda, he mumbled a quick, "thank you," and she responded with, "just don't hurt her". Elphaba, of course, looked like she wanted to shrink into a corner, not used to getting hugs and kind things (she'd have to get used to that, because he would always do kind things for her). He looked at her and she had to look at him. Their hug felt too short. "I love you," he whispered, pressing the note into her hand. "Open this when you get back to your dorm." And then she pulled away gently, allowing herself to give him a small, regretful smile.
When the time came, he made a quick stop and got to the park a little before eleven. She was walking; he could hear her footsteps, though it was too dark to see her yet. When she saw him, her gaze was drawn to and drifted along the diamonds.
"No. You don't need to say anything. I understand that there's no way you can be with me – if you even wanted to, that is. Just forget about last night. It's all right. I'll be fine."
"That's not what I wanted to say, Elphaba. When I go home, I'm going to spend all summer trying to convince my parents to relent and let me dispose of that old tradition. For all I know, they might actually listen…"
"Stop. Fiyero, you don't have to feel obligated to love me just because we got drunk and ended up having sex, or making love, if you'd rather say it that way. Things happen. Don't make yourself do something you don't want to."
"I already have to do something I don't want to," he said, looking down at her. "And that would be leaving here and not seeing you for three long months starting tomorrow afternoon." He kissed her and she didn't pull away. "I love you. Don't fall in love with anyone else over the summer, okay?"
"Fiyero, this is ridiculous. It won't…"
"We aren't talking about that now. I'll write to you, too. Are you staying here or going home?"
"Look for a letter every once in a while, then. And about last night, I know what happened between us frightened you a little."
"It's not that it…"
"Shhh. I understand. We'd better get back. Let me walk you to your dorm." He took her hand and walked with her until they could walk no further together. Then, he took her into his arms and kissed her, and she tentatively kissed him back. After breaking the kiss, he said, "I love you, my sweet Elphaba. Goodnight." And he began to walk away.
But he heard Elphaba whisper after him, "Goodnight, Prince Charming."
He turned around, gave her a smile and headed back.
During the three months of summer, he found he was unable to keep his mind off of her. He found himself wanting badly to be near her again, to touch her again, by the first day. How in Oz was he going to survive this sort of longing if he couldn't be with her?