Disclaimer: This lacks originality, but I don't own it.
Author's Note: Review junky, please feed my habit.
DG, like any child raised in the information age, knew better than to take movies too seriously. She knew that a man couldn't really fight off an entire army after being shot five times (though she was pretty sure Cain would try if faced with the situation); she knew that happily ever-afters weren't just one enchanted kiss away; and she knew that movie wisdom didn't always translate into the real world and was best taken with a grain of salt. Really, she knew all this, it was just that since her life had taken on more of a resemblance to a fantasy novel than to what she was accustomed to thinking of reality, she had been beginning to wonder if movies could be more instructional than previously supposed.
One particular movie had been bothering her. It was just so stupid, too – not the movie, but why it was bugging her. She'd always liked 'The Matchmaker' - for a romantic comedy it was fairly plausible – but now it was the bane of her existence. Namely the part where the matchmaker explains that in every great relationship there comes a time when you both reach for something and end up bumping heads. Really it was just so absurd.
But she and Cain had never knocked their skulls together. Glitch was a walking minefield where cracked skulls were concerned and Raw could be clumsy on occasion when in the grips of some vision or particularly powerful emotion. Even Tutor had been known from time to time to be a bit careless in his transformations, ending in him shooting up directly under someone's chin. Hell, back in Kansas she'd butted heads with Officer Gulch on more than one occasion and they didn't even like each other. The Tin Man, however, accidentally bumped heads with no one.
Not that Cain and her were in a relationship. She understood, what with the murdered wife and estranged son, that the few months Cain had been free from his near decade imprisonment in the tin suit would not have been enough for him have worked through his emotions sufficiently to be ready for a new relationship. There was also no guarantee that he would want her when he had. So in the bizarre way of nonsensical thoughts, this whole head bumping thing had become something of a superstition. If she could only bump heads once with Cain then maybe, just maybe, she could keep her Tin Man after all.
She'd been trying for months. Cain had to think she was the clumsiest girl in the O.Z. as she lost no opportunity to drop whatever she was holding whenever he was near (including Baroness de Carn's baby, fortunately the Tin Man made a nice save). The whole castle had to think she was insane, and frankly she agreed, when, on the rare occasion the Tin Man dropped something, DG sprinted over from wherever she was standing to help him pick it up. And all to no avail. Every time, every single time, Cain managed to dodge or swerve out of the way and, with a small smile and a 'careful there, Princess', hand whatever it was back to her. No one let her hold their babies anymore, either.
Sitting there observing the Tin Man as they waited to go down to the latest foofera ball her parents were holding, DG was about ready to give up. Short of walking up to the man and giving him a head butt she doubted she ever going crack skulls with the man. Even then he would no doubt manage to evade her and would then follow it up with instruction on the correct way to throw a head butt. Most likely they'd use Glitch as a practice dummy.
Leaning forward to straighten her skirts, DG sighed.
"You alright there, Princess?" Cain asked coming over to lend a hand. They were rather complicated.
Looking down at the top of his head as he wrestled with a particularly stubborn flounce, DG sighed again, "I love you."
She hadn't meant to say it, really she hadn't. It just slipped out of nowhere. DG didn't know if she wanted to hide her face in the hands, melt into the carpet, or run screaming from the room from embarrassment.
Cain's head shot up faster than she'd ever seen him move before. Not that she actually saw much of it, given that the top of his head somehow managed to bash into both her chin and nose. The Tin Man ducked back down again, clasping his head and muttering swears under his breath, while DG held her hands up to her nose and watering eyes. Cain was just recovering when, to his horror, DG's nose started to bleed.
It wasn't her first nosebleed; it wasn't even her first nosebleed since discovering her heritage. It was, however, her first nosebleed while wearing her fancy duds. Leaning over, desperately trying to stem the flow with her fingers, DG was extremely grateful when the Tin Man produced a handkerchief from somewhere. Crouching over her, Cain wiped up the blood then pinched the cloth over her nostrils. They stayed like that for an awkward moment when the Tin Man suddenly started laughing.
Incensed, DG growled out something profane beneath her breath.
Unperturbed, Cain continued to chuckle then shocked her utterly by saying, "Leave it to you, Princess, to get a nosebleed just when I desperately want to kiss you."
It was DG's turn to look up quickly. Indeed, her head rose even faster than the Tin Man's, resulting in a bit of accidental karma as her head smashed into his nose. Fortunately for the princess, however, she managed to avoid his chin. Rather solid that.
Cain went stumbling back clutching his own nose. Fresh out of handkerchiefs he sacrificed a doily from one of the side tables to stem his own nosebleed. They were stupid things anyhow.
"No, don't lean back," DG stated, voice muffled slightly by the handkerchief she'd managed to retain, "the blood will run down the back of your throat. Lean forward."
The Tin Man complied. They sat there a moment in uncomfortable silence contemplating their respective interrupted confessions. Then their eyes met. Two pairs of blue eyes began to dance, chuckles built up in their chests, and soon they were laughing hysterically. It was all just so ridiculous.
"Oh screw it," Cain said at last.
DG had just enough time to wonder when he'd learned that particular Otherside slang before he tossed his doily, swept aside his handkerchief, and proceeded to show her just how much he'd wanted to kiss her.
Half an hour or so later the footsteps of someone in the hall reminded them of ball they had to attend. Both Princess and Tin Man looked like they'd gone one round too many with an apple throwing tree but, frankly, DG didn't care. Who said enchanted kisses didn't lead to happily ever-afters?