A/N: While I'm not necessarily a fan of IKWYDLS, I do adore the characters of Barry and Helen, simply because I believe that Ryan Phillippe and Sarah Michelle Gellar have amazing chemistry in the movie. I think they compliment each other well on screen, both looks and talent wise (especially in Cruel Intentions). Thus making me a devoted shipper of this pairing.

Now I haven't read the book (and don't plan to) so you'll have to excuse my ignorance towards the specifics. Most of this story is just based on how I think Barry and Helen got together and why they fell apart.

Also the one-shots might be short, since I'm planning on making them drabble-like in length.

This first one-shot takes place in the first semester of Barry and Helen's freshman year of high school, before they became an actual couple. Barry and Helen might be exceptionally OOC, if you take their behavior and personalities in the movie into account. However, I wanted to write a nicer, more playful Barry, and a smarter, stronger Helen in the beginning, and then allude to the vicissitudes that have made them the way they are in the movie, and what I'm assuming to be in the book.

1. Books Aren't Only Meant For Studying

Helen sniffed, sneezed, and coughed until finally sinking into her chair with a defeated sigh. "Just perfect, I catch a cold during finals week. As if my life could get any worse," she mumbled to no one in particular. She rubbed her nose with a tissue, attempting to alleviate any residue there. Call it vain, but Helen really didn't want to look as awful as she felt, even if the only other presence in the room was Ms. Cornally, the school librarian.

Helen leveled a tired look at her table. "No one deserves this kind of torture," she groaned, eyeing the numerous books that were scattered throughout the tabletop.

She slowly counted all the pages she had left in the book in front of her. She stopped at thirty eight, concluding that she would certainly die from mental frustration (or a common cold) before ever successfully completing her studies.

In a bout of aggravation, she threw the book to the ground, choosing to blatantly ignore the glare she earned from Ms. Cornally.

"Well, looks like you're having a great time."

Helen turned around and wasn't surprised to see Barry William Cox staring at her with an amused smile. The jackass.

Of course it would be Barry, the one person who got to her like no one else. The one person who threatened her already limp grip on sanity.

"Go away Barry," she snapped, "I'm trying to study."

"Helen Rivers studying?" Barry gasped, feigning disbelief, "What a novel concept."

"Wow, handsome and clever, just how do you manage it all?" Helen retorted clearly annoyed.

"Well it's definitely not easy, if that's what you're thinking," he replied coolly, pulling up a chair next to Helen's.

Helen stared at Barry with an incredulous look. He wasn't going to seriously sit down with her, was he? "Gosh Barry, don't you have some unsuspecting child to steal candy from or senior citizen to berate?"

"All in good time, babe." He said, taking satisfaction in the way she twitched at that last word. "But right now I want to watch you study. Honestly Helen, I wasn't aware you actually knew how to read."

"You flatter me."

"Well I certainly do make the effort."

Helen groaned in frustration, "I'm not going to get rid of you am I?"

"Not in this lifetime." Barry answered with a wink, before moving in and threading his fingers through Helen's long hair.

The contact was so unexpected that Helen nearly fell out of her chair in shock.

Barry brushed Helen's bangs from her face, and scooted closer to her until they were barely centimeters apart. His soft touch was so foreign that she began to think that her heart would explode in her chest at any given moment.

"Heller," Barry breathed, using the nickname he had adopted months ago when they had first met.

All Helen could manage was a strangled "Ye..yes?" in reply.

Barry stared at her with the most genuine look in his eyes. One word Helen would have never used to describe the boy before her.

He moved in even closer until Helen could feel the warmth of his breath on the shell of her ear. In a low voice he whispered, "Babe…your nose is running."

Helen pulled back with a jerk to meet Barry's amused smile for the second time that day.

Without a moments hesitation, she swiftly picked up one of the books on the table, and promptly hit Barry upside the head with it, glad that she had gotten at least one task accomplished for the evening.

- конец (end)-