a/n: Just a random oneshot that I wrote at about 2am. Enjoy D

Disclaimer: Don't own anything.

"Don't worry. Someone is on their way here right now to fix this. We'll have you down in no time! Just stay calm."

"Stay calm. What kind of bullshit advice is that?" Derek grumbled as he leaned his head back against the metal grate of the cage him and Casey were currently enclosed in.

"Derek they're only trying to help." Casey tried to reason with him, but there was no use in it. Derek had been grumbling and complaining for the past twenty five minutes, and she knew that he wasn't going to stop until they were back on the ground.

She had to admit, being stuck at the top of a ferris wheel with her annoying stepbrother wasn't exactly her idea of a well-spent Saturday afternoon. She could think of a million other things that she could be doing right about now, none of them involving Derek. She'd much rather be back on the ground, enjoying a day at the fair with Max and Emily, like she had originally planned. Of course, Derek would have been there anyway, as him and Sam had met up with them there, but at least she wouldn't be pressed up against him as she was now. She preferred that, if he needed to be around at all, he at least be a good six feet away. At least that way, she could ignore him and enjoy her day.

But of course, she wasn't on the ground talking and laughing with her friends. She wasn't having a good time. She was thirty feet in the air, stuck in a confined metal cage with a whiny, annoyed, hungry, complaining Derek.

"How long does it take to get a couple of kids off of a ferris wheel?" Derek asked, staring at the miniature forms of people below them. Some of them were gazing upwards, at the dozen cages of trapped riders. The crowd however, had considerably thinned out, once people got bored of watching the fairground mechanics rush around with tools, occasionally yelling out to one another, or to the passengers above. Casey desperately wished that she was one of the dozens of people below, gazing at the people trapped above with pity. But if she had to be trapped up here with Derek, she certainly wasn't planning on listening to his complaining the whole time.

"If you'd shut up and stop complaining, the time might pass quicker." she said, her head resting on her hand.

"That makes no sense." he murmered, brushing a strand of hair out of his eyes. "Its too damn hot up here."

"Well it is the middle of July Derek." Casey reminded him, finding the heat a bit exhilerating herself. Unable to help herself, she smirked. "I told you not to wear that sweater. I told you it would be too warm."

"The sweater was working just fine when I was on the ground." he snapped back. "Besides, since when is it any of your business what I wear?"

"Forget it." she dismissed, concluding that Derek was incapable of civil conversation. "Just..stop complaining, and be patient."

They both leaned on their sides, against their corresponding sides of the cage. Neither of them could think of anything to say to the other one, perhaps afraid of starting another disagreement. They had, after all, done nothing but disagree the whole day. Anyone with common sense had to have seen that sticking the two of them together on the ferris wheel was an inadvisable and potentially dangerous move. One look at the way they had been arguing in the lineup should have warned everyone that putting them together, thirty feet in the air, above a concrete parking lot, was a bad idea. But yet, here they were.

------(flashback)---------

"Its our turn next you guys." Emily told the other three who were standing in the lineup with her. Derek chose not to respond as he leaned casually against the barrier that enclosed the lineup, and stared up at the cages above him. Casey and Max begun to dig through their pockets for their tickets. Casey pulled a red fair ticket out of her back pocket, but Max continued to dig through his, movements getting more frantic. Finally, he gave up, emptyhanded, and turned to Emily, realization dawning over him.

"I gave the tickets to you." he said simply. "On the last ride. Remember? You got the ride attendant to hold onto your bag and I shoved my tickets in there."

Emily gasped.

"Right!" she said, a hand flying to her mouth. "I totally forgot to get my bag back from that guy. Come on, we've got to go get it now, before someone else takes it."

"Alright, we'd better hurry." Max said, as him and Emily squeezed through the lineup. Casey whipped around.

"Max! Emily!" she said, looking back and forth between them and Derek, who hadn't been paying the situation any real attention. She forged a look of disgust. "You can't seriously be leaving me with..him.."

Derek looked over at this, but chose not to comment. Emily shot her an apologetic look as she called out over her shoulder.

''Sorry Case. Its just one ride." she responded, not easing Caseys disappointment at all. "You can deal with Derek for five minutes, can't you?"

--------(end flashback)-------------

Five minutes. This had to be the longest five minutes that Casey McDonald had ever lived through. She could've put up with five minutes. But this-this was too much. She glanced over at Derek, to see what he was doing, and seen that he was still leaning easily against the side of the cage. His hair was falling around his eyes, limp from the humidity. She smiled a little. He looked sort of cute, with his hair all messed up like that.

As she thought this, she closed her eyes, before shaking her head. No way was she thinking that. The damn heat was making her delirious. Frustrated, she kicked the front of the cage as hard as she could, making it rock forwards for a moment. At her sudden movement, Derek turned to look at her. He laughed, smirking.

"What happened to patience Case?" he asked, smugly. She glared at him. "Oh come on, get a sense of humor."

"I don't see anything funny about this situation Derek." she said quite honestly, folding her arms across her chest defiantly. "I really don't."

"I know how I could make it funny." Derek smirked, placing both of his hands on the metal bar, that was pushed entirely forwards at the moment, to keep them upright. "I mean, the look on your face if I spun us upside down is looking pretty tempting right about now. And I need a good laugh."

"Don't..you..dare.." Casey said, through clenched teeth, placing her own hands on the bar to prevent him from pulling it forwards. She held on tightly, fear coursing through her. She had always had a fear of heights. Being up here in the first place was bad enough. No way was she rocking back and forth thirty feet in the air. But Dereks smirk stayed in place and he tapped his fingers suggestively against the bar.

"Derek I swear, if you pull that bar, you will discover an alternate route out of this cage." she threatened. "And believe me, it will involve this metal door opening before we reach the ground."

"Bring it on McDonald." Derek laughed. Before Casey knew what was happening, Derek had yanked the bar towards them, and the metal cage lost its stability, flipping upside down in a fraction of a second. Casey screamed in fear and grabbed onto Dereks arm, burying her face into his sweater. She let both of her arms wrap around his body, trying to remain upright.

"Derek, Derek please put it back Derek, put it back, put it back!" she cried, tears threatening to spill from her eyes. Sensing that she was being serious and that she was actually scared, Derek pushed the bar forwards again, locking it into place. He felt her shaking next to him, and he felt guilt throb through him.

"Casey?" he said gently, and she let go of his arm, taking a deep breath and closing her eyes for a moment. Derek hated that he'd actually scared her. "Case, you okay?"

"I thought I told you not to do that." she snapped, moving as far as she could away from him and turning her gaze to look out over the city. Derek moved closer to her.

"Case Im sorry." he said, being honest for once. Casey refused to meet his gaze. Reaching over, he gripped her chin and turned her head so that she was looking at him. "I really am, okay? I thought you were just fooling around."

"Im terrified of heights Derek." she said, her voice shaking along with the rest of her body. "Absolutely petrified."

" I didn't know." he said honestly. "I really didn't. I wouldn't have done that if I had known it would scare you like that."

She studied him carefully, as though searching for a hint of dishonesty within his features. It would be like him, after all, to lie now, and lure her into a false sense of security, only to pull the same stunt again when she wasn't paying attention. But his gaze appeared to be genuinely concerned. She let out a deep breath.

"Its fine." she said, relaxing a bit. "You didn't know."

There was silence for a moment, perhaps in the akward atmosphere that was often present when the two happened to get along for a minute. It was Casey who finally spoke up.

"I can't wait to get off of this thing."

"Why?" Derek said, mockingly. "So you can go hang out with your boyfriend?"

There was a certain edge of bitterness in his voice that always seemed to be present when it came to Casey and Maxs' relationship.

"Max is not my boyfriend." Casey said instantly, blushing. "And even if he was.. why should it bother you anyway?"

"I didn't say it bothered me." he said, perhaps a little too quickly. He looked away. "Well it sort of does I guess."

"It does?" she repeated, not expecting this answer. She hated how a small part of her was hoping that it bothered him because he was jealous. "Why does it bother you?"

Before he could respond, the entire ride gave a lurch forward. Derek heard the rides surprised occupants crying out in fear for a moment, and, before he could even register what had happened, Caseys hand was clasped tightly in his. Who initiated the movement, he couldn't possibly say. It could have been Casey, but he couldn't say that for sure. They glanced at each other quickly, before Casey spoke.

"I hate that feeling." she said quietly, searching his eyes. He appeared confused, and she rushed to explain. ''The feeling of falling. I find it always makes my heart skip that one beat, and it makes my stomach drop. It scares me..but at the same time, its like..I want to feel it again.."

All throughout Caseys little speech, Derek had been moving closer and closer, so that he was close enough to feel her warm breath tickling his face.

"Do you really want to know why seeing you with Max bugs me?" he asked quietly, deciding to take a chance. She nodded slowly. Derek took a deep breath.

"Because I know that..if you end up with him, you'll be off limits again." he admitted softly, and she felt her heart beating faster. "And I can't stand losing you to some other guy."

Casey let Dereks words run through her mind a time or two. Derek was jealous of Max. He was jealous of Max because Max had the one thing Derek couldn't have. Casey. Or so he thought. Casey smiled at Derek suggestively.

"Nobody said you had to lose me." she said, rather quietly. "Not if you make the right move."

Without really thinking about what he was doing, Derek closed the distance between them, brushing his lips against hers lightly. She felt her eyes flutter shut, and she was vaguely aware of her hand finding its way to the back of his neck. She was aware of the fact that she was kissing him back, but why, she couldn't possibly say. All she knew was that right then, everything felt right. The fact that it was Derek that she was kissing- her enemy Derek- her stepbrother Derek- didn't seem to be registering as wrong. The world outside of their little metal cage didn't seem so important anymore. In fact, she rather felt that she would be perfectly contented spending the rest of the day right where she was.

But of course, the moment ended as Derek pulled back, his brown eyes searching hers quizically, as though searching for a reaction. He seemed worried and nervous as he waited to see if he had made the right move. She waited a moment, before running her hand through his hair, smiling softly.

"Its like the feeling of falling." she said, in a voice barely above a whisper.

Slowly, a smile broke across his face, and he leaned in again, capturing her lips in another kiss, this one just as gentle and short lived as the last. Perhaps it would have lasted longer, but a voice calling up from far beneath them caught their attention.

"The mechanic needs to go pick up some more equipment from our other locaton." the man called up, barely audible through the crowd, and the buzz of the machines. "He won't be more than twenty minutes. We'll have you out of there within the hour."

Derek turned his focus back to Casey again with a smirk.

"Whats the rush?" he whispered to her and, for once, she smirked right back at him.

The feeling of falling. It catches all of us at the most unsuspecting of moments. It makes your heart skip that one beat, makes your stomach lurch pleasantly, even if its just for that one moment. Its something that is feared, yet anticipated for its andrenaline rushing ability.

And with that kiss, they had experienced that feeling. It had most certainly triggered a natural high. It had made both of their hearts stop to register what was happening, to make sure that it was real. Both had felt the funny feeling that went through them when their lips connected. And although neither was sure where this would lead, they knew that they wouldn't be able to live not knowing, and not experiencing, the feeling of falling.

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