A/N: Okay, just something I whipped up for fun, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't review, people! Thanks!
Disclaimer: I don't own MediatorJust this plot.
Of all the hair brained schemes, this has got to be the worst. I, Suze Simon, am about to break into my ex-boyfriend's apartment and steal from him. Who would've thunk it?
Okay, okay, but I can explain. It started at Cee Cee's party…
"Here's to Cee Cee no longer being single!" Clarissa exclaimed. We all raised our glasses and downed yet another martini.
Cee Cee giggled and pulled out her wallet. Adam smiled back at her between her debit card and her journalist ID. "How did I get so lucky, you guys?" I could see the tears pooling in her eyes already.
"Hey, hey, hey! Put the picture down, Cee. It's your bachelorette party; live it up!" I said, dangling another martini beneath her nose.
Cee Cee and Adam, having finally admitted their feelings for each other, had been dating for a year when Adam asked her to marry him. After Cee Cee woke up again, she said yes, of course. And me being her best friend, she asked me to be her maid of honor.
That's right: maid of honor. Not matron. Why? Because I'm not married. As good as it was to know that you guys were rooting for me with Jesse, it just didn't work out. We were separating and we weren't even living together yet (stupid 1800s manners). Jesse had school all the time. No, really, I'm serious. Classes at 6, 8, 10, 3, 7, and 9. Where was the time to see one another? Where were the cute little things he used to do? Now he was too tired to do much of anything!
So I broke up with him.
Yeah, yeah, jeer all you want. What, was I supposed to stay in the relationship and be both the girlfriend AND boyfriend? No way. Not for Suze Simon.
"What time does the stripper get here?" Nicole asked glancing at her watch. Cee Cee and I had acquired a few good friends, even though none of them new about my ability.
Cee Cee blushed. The stripper had been Clarissa's idea since we knew Cee Cee would be much to shy to even inquire about that.
"10," Clarissa answered, sipping at her daiquiri. Clarissa was one of those classically beautiful types. Dark hair, dark skin, dark eyes. Actually, she sort of reminded me of Jesse…
"Suze, what if he gets second thoughts? He'll see that he can have anyone and just leave poor old albino Cee Cee to herself at the alter!" She wailed the last word as her tears slipped off of her face and into the empty glass.
"Adam?" Nicole scoffed. "Let's face it, Cee. It doesn't get much better that you."
"Really?" Cee Cee asked timidly.
"Hell, yes. Now let's clean this place up. The stripper will be here in ten."
"Ugh." I couldn't feel anything. Everything was in this sort of haze around my head, making it sort of hard to think. "Cee?"
"Suze? Where are you?" Cee Cee's muffled voice came out.
I looked around and finally spotted her white hair. She lay face-down on the couch beside me. I made the effort to lift my arm and tapped her head. "Up here, Cee."
"Oh." She stretched and leaned her head up. "Hey."
"Hey," I said back, "best bachelorette party I've ever been to."
She grinned. "I guess we can ask Rissa and Cole later." Clarissa and Nicole were curled up next to one another with the stripper's tie around Nicole's head and his card in Clarissa's hand.
"Yeah?" I swung my head around to face her. In the darkness I could still make out her bowed head, as if she didn't really want to say something.
"What really happened between you and Jesse?"
Agg, the ever popular question. Truthfully, if I knew myself, I'd answer. What did happen with us?
"I don't know, Cee. It's complicated."
"Call him." Her voice slurred, but I understood well enough to get my response out.
"You must be drunk," I answered, "no way."
"Suze." Cee Cee had developed this stern reporter voice ever since she'd started her job at The Gull. Really stupid name for a pretty okay newspaper. Anyway, she was using that voice now. "Call him." She threw the phone in my general direction and it landed on the pillows with a soft whump.
I hesitated only a second before snatching it up and dialing the number my head had forgotten, but my fingers still knew.
I found myself hoping he didn't pick up. What was I going to say, anyway?
Did I really want to get back together with him? What if it turned out to be exactly the same?
Mother of God, please don't let him answer the phone.
Okay, come on, pick up already!
Hello, you've reached Jesse de Silva. I'm away at a seminar in Washington, but I'll be back soon. Just leave a message at the beep and I'll get back to you as soon as I can. Adios! BEEP!
"Hey, Jesse. It's Suze." I paused.
Cee Cee made a motion for me to continue so I cleared my throat and began.
"I know things didn't really end on a high note with us, but I'm willing to try to fix it…if you are. I guess just call me on my cell if you get the chance. Um, bye."
My finger hovered over the 'Talk' button. Was that all I wanted to say?
I love you, Jesse, I thought.
"There," I said, whirling back around to face Cee Cee. "Happy?"
"Awww!" she, Nicole, and Clarissa cooed.
"You really love him, huh Suze?" Clarissa asked.
I laughed. "Where would you get an idea like that?" I settled back into the couch pillows and placed my hands behind my head. Now that that was off my chest, everything seemed so much more peaceful. My eyes closed…at least until Nicole said her piece.
"Suze, you just said it into the phone."
My eyes bugged open. I said that? Me? You don't go around telling your ex that you're still in love with him!
I looked at the phone in horror and grabbed it, hoping to extract my message out of it somehow. Cee Cee nodded slowly. "Yeah, you said, and I quote, 'I love you, Jesse.'"
You know those moments when you think everything sucks and your life couldn't get any worse? Yeah, it just did.
I had to get that tape.
"You could say there was a fire in his building and get the police to evacuate it so you could sneak in," Nicole offered.
It was around three a.m. and we were brainstorming ways for me to get that tape back.
"The trouble comes when the police don't see the fire, Cole," Clarissa pointed out.
Gah! This wasn't getting us anywhere! For all I know, Jesse and his new girlfriend (he had to have one; who wouldn't love Jesse?) had come home from the seminar and were listening to my pathetic tape over and over and—
"Suze, didn't Jesse give you a key? You know, for emergencies?"
Lightbulb! Thank you Cee Cee!
"Yeah," I said rooting around in my purse. The key was on a chain I used to carry with me everywhere. "Now we just have to get in and get the tape!"
"We?" Nicole questioned. "What we?"
Clarissa and Cee Cee looked uncomfortable. "Suze, you'll have to do it on your own. I can't leave," Cee Cee offered.
That's how I ended up standing outside of Jesse's apartment building…in the dark…at four in the morning.
Should I stay and face the doom that awaits me, or go and avoid said doom?
Come on, do I look stupid?
I slid the key in the lock and turned it quietly. Mrs. Higgins peeked out of her door. She was a nice old woman, always making Jesse and me cookies on one of the rare occasions he wasn't studying. "Who's there?" she croaked. "I've got a gun! I'm not scared to use it!"
"Mrs. Higgins! It's me, Suze! Jesse's girlfriend!" Geez, I came to get the tape, not get shot.
"Oh," she replied, her voice returning to its normal sweetness. "Suze, honey, I haven't seen you in a while. Why are you getting in so late?"
"Er, bachelorette party, Mrs. Higgins. I just—"
"Would you like some cookies? I can whip some up in about half an hour," she interrupted.
"That's fine, Mrs. Higgins. I'm just grabbing…Jesse's notes for him and then I'll be gone."
"Alright, dear, don't be a stranger!" She closed the door and I sighed. One obstacle down, one to go.
I opened the door and immediately ran into a table. Wincing, I flipped the light-switch and found that the entire place had been re-arranged. Figures; his new girlfriend's the 'home improvement' type. See? He was already on to better things.
I put that thought out of my mind and set in on the task of finding the answering machine. Ha! Success!
Jesse's old tape recorder was sitting on a side table next to his sofa. Now came the hard part: I couldn't just take the whole tape. There may be something important on there.
I rewound it and pressed play. The least I could do was screen through the messages and stop before mine, so he wouldn't miss anything.
Hey Jesse. It's Valerie, this seductive voice came on. I just wondered if maybe you wanted to come over. We could just…study. Just call me when you get the chance. Bye.
That little tramp! I sighed deeply, remembering I had no right to be harboring these feelings. What was I expecting? That Jesse'd be saving himself for me and turning down all those wanna-be female nurses? Psha, what universe do I live in? Next.
Mr. de Silva, I am pleased to tell you that you've made the Dean's List. Call whenever you return from the seminar that you're attending and we'll discuss the details. Thank you.
Ah, see? I used to have a smart boyfriend! Then my message came on.
Hey Jesse, it's Suze.
I could hear a key turning in the lock. Holy cheesecakes! He's back!
I know things didn't really end on a high note with us—
I flipped the lights and threw myself onto the floor.
"What in the world?" I heard his keys jingle as he set them down next to the machine. "How did this get on?"
—but I'm willing to try to fix it…if you are.
Why must everything go wrong? I forgot to shut it off!
I crawled toward the ajar door. If I could make it, I could at least save some of my dignity. Once again, I knocked into that damn table.
"Susannah?" Jesse turned to face me. Well, not the me that's smooth and seductive. Nope, she always disappearing whenever Jesse's around; go figure. What he saw was the me that was clutching her knee and rocking back and forth on his carpet. That me.
For a moment, neither of us moved or talked. I just stared at him, and he stared right back. I was dreading the moment when those fatal four words came on, but they didn't seem to be coming.
"Where's your girlfriend?" I spat out bitterly.
Jesse appeared bewildered. "Girlfriend, what girlfriend?"
"Look, the least you can do is answer my question. The girlfriend that re-arranged your apartment."
"I did that. To take my mind off of something." All of a sudden, he appeared to be very interested in his loafers.
I stayed silent for a second. "Who's Valerie, then?"
He laughed. "Did she call again? She just won't leave me alone! I wonder what she wants." He scratched the back of his neck absent-mindedly and all of a sudden I was reminded of how he never knew when girls were coming on to him.
"So…may I ask why you're in my apartment, Susannah?"
I am always wrong. On sooooo many levels. Now what was I going to say? "I thought I left my toothbrush here," I said weakly.
I love you, Jesse.
Goddammit, how did I know it was too good to be true? I should have known that the message wouldn't just erase itself!
"Was that you?" he said finally, pointing at the machine.
Why me? Why couldn't fate just let me slink out of that apartment like the snake I was?
"Yeah," I said somewhat timidly.
Okay? What the hell does that mean?
"Did you mean it?" he asked again.
Suddenly, I wasn't afraid. If I was going to humiliate myself, let it be one for the books.
"No…well, yes, but I didn't mean for it to come out that way, and I—" That familiar Jesse smile was back. That smile he always used when I was making a fool out of myself.
"Don't you laugh at me!"
He sobered quickly. "I wouldn't dream of it." He took two steps toward me.
"I mean, I should have given us a chance and I shouldn't have been so quick to get out of it. We're going to have some hard times, and we'll have to hold on because I want to be with you and—"
Jesse drew me to him and held my face. "I love you, too."
I smiled and leaned in to kiss him.
"Suze, I brought those cookies over just in case you were—"
We turned to look at Mrs. Higgins who had a very shocked expression on her face. "Mrs. Higgins, I can explain—"
She held up a hand. "No need, sweet, I was young once you know." Mrs. Higgins winked, then set down the tray at that table next to the door. "I'll just leave you two to looking over those notes." She smiled and closed the door.
I guess that table really was useful.
When Jesse's lips finally met mine, I poured all those months of not seeing him or getting to stay with him into that kiss. And all at once, everything was right with the world again.
A/N: So? Good, bad, ugly? I'd like to know! Thanks for reading!
The delightful Ellie