Disclaimer: Do not owe Gilore Girls.
AN: I know, I know, I'm horrible: starting another story, while I've just begun one. (You are everything I never knew I always wanted), but I'm a bit stuck on that one. I'm confident that I'll work it out and update, I'm not a quitter, but in the meantime I'm going to write this one. So, dear people, please understand, please read and please REVIEW! Hope you like it. :) Cheers.
P.S. Italics meen flashback. :)
Chapter 1: The next best thing
It was cold evening mid-January. New Haven was already was wrapped up in the dark, at the time that a young couple left a small Italian restaurant. Rory shivered slightly when the icy wind seemed to go right through her coat. She pulled her scarf tighter around her neck. Logan put an arm around her shoulders pulling her closer. Rory smiled up at him.
"What?" he asked smirking.
Rory stopped in her tracks pulling him to a halt and pressing her lips to his in the middle of the street. His arms drew her closer, while he answered her kiss. Passers by were staring at them, but neither of them seemed to care.
"I had a wonderful time," she said
"So I take it that I am capable of doing something right?" he murmured against Rory's lips.
"Don't gloat, Logan, it's not Christian."
Logan let out a loud laugh, little clouds of air escaping in to the cold night.
"Neither am I, Ace, and you'll taste the consequences of me being a heathen tonight,"
Rory's cheeks colored a dark red. Logan just loved to make the girl blush. His lips found hers again and for a moment they were lost in each other again. That was until Logan's cell phone started singing "Jeremiah was a frog". He ignored it for a while, but picked up eventually.
"You did what? Why am I not surprised?"
"I'm on my way."
Rory wondered what the half sided conversation was about. Knowing Finn it probably was something colorful and most likely illegal. Logan hung up and sighed.
"Finn got himself arrested… again…"
Rory could not help but roll with her eyes.
"Apparently he found it necessary to go skating in the Hartford skating ring… wearing nothing else than a pair of skates and a Santa Claus hat. Anyhow… the manager called 911. Poor guy…"
"Poor fellow skaters, going out on a beautiful winter night to go skating and seeing Finn's… package unprepared."
"Speaking from experience, Ace?" Logan asked playfully and earned himself a smack on the arm.
Rory looked into his vivid chocolate brown eyes and smiled.
"I guess our date is off…"
"It doesn't have to be… Spend the night…"
Rory was silent for a moment. He had never asked her that before. As a matter of fact she had never been to his place. They always ended up at her place. And somehow she preferred that. The fact that he was seeing other girls wasn't that evident then. Then she could pretend to be the only one.
"I don't know, Logan… Paris is moving, it's a mess in my dorm, she's stressed. I have class in the morning and…"
"Come on, Ace, the more reason to stay… I saw Paris for 5 minutes and I contemplated institutionalization… I don't bite I swear. Spend the night, have a quiet morning… Go to class… set the alarm if you want…"
She looked at him again. It was too cold to think. She could feel her toes slowly getting frostbite.
"Ok," She sighed, "but the alarm will be set… and coffee. I want coffee and… I have no clothes…"
"Alarm check, coffee check check.." Logan laughed.
"Why double check?" Rory asked.
"Asks the girl who wore a T-shirt saying: "If it weren't for coffee, I'd have no identifiable personality whatsoever". I'll better be safe, than sorry." He laughed.
"Ha ha, aren't you a funny one," she said mock offended, but couldn't help but smile.
It had been months ago, that her mom and she had worn those silly T-shirts, even before they had gotten in their arrangement. It was strange that he remembered.
Logan waved down a cab.
"The key is behind the loose brick behind the plant. 4th floor, 28b, " He told her, "I'll be there in an hour, hour and a half. You get comfortable, plunder the fridge, watch a movie … have some coffee… " he finished with a wink.
Rory greeted the doorman of Logan's apartment building.
"Can I help you, miss?" the friendly looking middle-aged man asked.
"I'm supposed to wait for someone." She answered a little nervous.
"May I ask for whom?" The black man doorman asked.
"Uhm… Logan Huntzberger," Rory said. She realized how this had to look. One of Logan's one-night stands or 'regulars' if he had any, coming here to spend the night.
"Ah yes, mister Huntzberger. I didn't know he had a girlfriend. And a very pretty one at that." Rory was confused.
"Thank you, sir, but I'm not his girlfriend." Rory blushed.
"Oh, just call me Eddie, miss, everybody does. And forgive me for being so forward. I just never see him with a lady friend. You do know he's not in, miss?"
He probably didn't work here for long. Because this didn't sound as Logan: never with a lady friend. It was more: never without a lady friend.
"Yes, he let me wait for him in his apartment." Rory answered.
"Just sign the guestbook, please. All unannounced guests are required to."
He said with a smile and handed her a pen. Rory wrote down her name.
"Goodnight, miss Gilmore." Eddie gave her a warm smile.
"Goodnight, sir." Rory smiled back stepping in the elevator and pressing 4.
Rory walked down the dim lit hall. 28a…28b... 26a … 26b. She stopped in front of the door that held the two golden digits and looked around for the plant. A ficus was standing in the corner of the hallway. Rory felt the bricks behind it and soon found a loose one. Behind it lay a single key. She stuck it in the lock, twisting it and entered the dark apartment, touching the wall in search of a light switch. When the light turned on she noticed she was standing in a small hall. Taking of her coat and hanging it on the antic hat rack she made her way further in Logan's apartment. She found herself in a spacious living room. Her heels clicked on the dark hardwood floor as she walked around rubbing her cold hands and taking in the fire place, the expensive looking furniture, his stereo system, flat screen TV, a pool table, excessive liquor cabinet, the book case… her eyes traced the titles. She wondered if he had read some of them. She started laughing when she noticed the armour in the corner. There were two things Logan had plenty of: money and imagination. She wasn't sure if that was a good or a bad thing yet. She was starting to get hungry as almost everynight at 11 pm. no matter what or when she ate before that. She walked to the spotless kitchen and opened the fridge…
Rory padded to the little kitchenette of her dorm. She was hungry. Scrap that, she was starving! Opening the fridge she got disappointed: Paris' pea and bean soup, a cucumber, a banana that seemed to have resided there for quit some time now (it was black), a carton of milk and one onion. Sad sad sad. A knock on the door made her crawl out of the fridge. She looked at the clock. It was almost 11 pm.. Who could it be at this hour? She opened the door and was surprised to find Logan on the other end.
"Hey." She greeted him a bit surprised.
His eyes traveled down her body and up again.
"Hey." He then greeted back smirking.
"I thought you got a date tonight." Rory said. They had had coffee that afternoon. He had told her he was going out with some girl.
"You were…"Rory stretched.
"… as in not anymore," he smirked leaning against the doorpost.
"Huh… interesting. Why?"
"Well we were having dinner in a lovely French restaurant… great cuisine…excellent wine collection…"
Rory raised an eyebrow.
"I realized I wanted to be someplace else with someone else…" he finished never leaving her eyes.
"Like…" Just hit me! She thought. What am I doing flirting with Logan? For the umpteenth time today!
"Like in the doorway… talking to this crazed girl I know, who pulls off wearing orange flannel penguin pajama's very well."
Rory's face colored bright red when she realized what she was wearing.
"Is that right?"
"It is…" he winked. "So… may I come in?"
"On one condition!" Rory stated dead serious.
Logan raised his eyebrows in anticipation.
"I'm hungry!" Rory deadpanned, causing Logan to burst into laughter.
"Pancakes, ok?" he asked brushing past her. Rory followed him in to the kitchenette and installed herself on one chair as Logan draped his leather jacket over the other.
"Where is the flour?" he asked. Rory raised her eyebrows…
"Do I look like someone, who knows where the flour is?"
Logan laughed opening a cabinet:
"My bad, forgive me."
20 minutes later Rory was enjoying her first pancake.
"Mmmmmm…That is soo good! I never took you for a chef."
"It's pancakes, Ace, not salmon puffs." Logan stated with a smile flipping the second pancake in the air.
"Wow!" Rory jumped up in her seat clapping in her hands." Do it again! Do it again!"
"God, Ace, it really doesn't take much to entertain you. Flip a pancake, let a raisin disappear…"
"You can do that?" she asked.
"I'm a man of many talents."
"Show me, show me! Let the raisin disappear!"
Rory watched as Logan took a raisin, threw it in the air and let it fall into his mouth.
"One moment it's there and the other it's gone." She started laughing.
If 5 months ago someone had told her that Logan Huntzberger was going to bake her pancakes, or that they would be flirting non stop, she would've laughed out loud. If someone had told her that she was falling for the cocky playboy she would've called 911. But here she was; falling for him and how.
"Do you want some coffee?" Rory asked Logan after a good hour of eating pancakes and watching Monty Python.
Logan looked at his watch. "Half past midnight. A bit late for coffee… Or a bit early it depends on the way you're looking at it."
"It is NEVER too late for coffee." Rory stated with a gasp.
"If I'll drink coffee now, I wont sleep tonight." He explained, smirking. "So thank you for the offer, but I'll pass. It's time to go anyway."
Rory nodded trying to hide her disappointment. She didn't want him to leave yet. He got up from the couch and put on his jacket. Rory rose too, following him to the door.
"It was very 'gemütlich' as Germans would say." He told her pulling her closer and sweetly kissing her on the lips.
It wasn't demanding or passionate, but a shiver ran down her spine. There was something about Logan. Something about his kisses, that made her mind go blank, her body senseless.
"Goodnight," he said, brushing a wisp of hair behind her ear.
Rory bit her lip. She really didn't want him to leave. She pressed her lips on his, tracing his bottom lip with her tongue, begging for entrance. Logan invited her in, lacing his fingers in her hair. They were both fighting for control over the other… something they always seemed to do in everything… whether it was a discussion on Proust or a silly staring contest over a cup of coffee. Gasping for air, they broke away. Rory looked into his dark chocolate brown eyes. Trying to read him, but couldn't. She never could. He seemed to be hiding there somewhere in those dark smiling eyes, not wanting to come out.
"Don't go," she said merely above a whisper.
"Don't go…" she said pushing the jacket of his shoulders. It fell on the floor with a loud flop.
He moved closer, leaning in for a kiss, but stopped inches away.
"Rory… are you sure?"
Rory moved closer, playing with the hem of his shirt. Was she? She didn't know. What she did know was, that she didn't want him to leave, she didn't want him to stop…
A good four months they had been seeing each other 'the no strings way'-It was not easy, at times really hard, but in a way she couldn't imagine her life without Logan anymore, so she settled for the next best thing, although somewhere she knew she wasn't cut out for this - and this was the first time that she was up here. In his apartment, in his kitchen, in his fridge. The contents was shabby. Beer, an opened bottle of wine, bottles of water, Red Bull, a lemon, eggs, cheese, and a carton of milk… It was just sad. Plunder the fridge, she thought with a grimace. The thugs had descended on this unguarded village many years ago. Coffee, then, you wouldn't dare to lie about coffee, Huntzberger. Even you are not that brave.
She opened one of the cabinets and gasped, pulling her phone out of her pocket and dialing his number.
"Yes?" he answered she could almost see his smirk.
"'Nescafé es no café, Huntzberger!" she stated. "You lied! Your fridge is downright pathetic and you have instant coffee in your cabinet. Shame on you!"
Logan laughed. She could hear he was driving his voice sounded different and she could hear cars passing him by.
"Second cabinet to the left," he said, "the Nescafé is for times of drought."
Rory did as he said and smiled.
"Puerto Rican, now I can work with that…"
"Good. Bye, Ace."
"Bye" She hung up and started the coffee maker.
As her elixir was brewing she examined the rest of the apartment. His study; holding a beautiful antique mahogany desk, more books and an ancient globe. Her fingers traced the marvelous thing. She noticed a slight crack, as if it consisted out of two parts and pulled at it. The globe opened reveling a hollow inside holding Logan's expensive scotch. Rory grinned: money and imagination. Next was his bedroom: containing a comfy looking queen bed. She walked to the window taking of her boots and enjoyed the view of the now slightly lit up Yale campus. Just as her curiosity got the better of her and she wanted to pull open his closet she heard that her coffee was done.
"I'll be back!" she stated in her best Schwarzenegger impersonation pointing at the closet and frolicked to the kitchen.