Disclaimer: I haven't posted a fanfic on this site for far too long. If I owned the show it would have to be considered summer hiatus.

So...I've been meaning to post this fic for ages because I have had a good chunk of it done (okay, not really...maybe a quarter done...but still) but things kept distracting me. But I finally got around to doing it. I'm not sure how much I want to say...the story itself becomes apparent after the first few updates so you'll see where it goes. It's Mer/Der, and college and I like to think it's a fun ride. So that's all there is to say.

And if you're looking for the lyrics...it's named from I'm In by Keith Urban.


Mark Sloan was an idiot and quite possibly a horrible human being.

It was a fact I had known about the man for years; actually I wasn't sure there had ever been a time I hadn't known in, considering the way we had met when he had tried to steal a ball from me at the ripe old age of three. He wasn't about to win any awards for being the greatest person. And despite of that, I loved the man anyway. As my mom had always said, they had never been able to give me a brother so I had found one for myself. And Mark had always been there, from the age of three on it had been Derek Shepherd and Mark Sloan together against the world. We had practically lived together growing up.

And now that we had our own place, the simple fact was that if I spent one more day living with him, it wasn't looking like Mark Sloan's survival would be all that guaranteed.

As I was certain I'd end up killing him.

Which is why I was standing outside on a unseasonably cool September day, staring at a bulletin board full of advertisements, in hopes that at least one – by some miracle of God or whatever higher power you chose to believe in – would be an apartment that might actually be a little liveable.

Because a man could only put up with a woman screaming and headboards banging against a wall for so many nights before he snapped.

Especially when one wasn't getting any of that action himself.

But none of that was the point right now, right now I needed to find somewhere to live that wouldn't actually lead to insanity. There had to be something that wasn't cockroach infested or too far away from campus or too loud to get any of his work done. He had a lot of work this year, a couple of weeks in and he was already overwhelmed with the heavy workload so the quieter he could find, the better.

There was nothing, absolutely nothing. I was not going to freak out, I wasn't. If I couldn't find anything I'd just have to find a way to live with Mark for a bit longer, and while he had seemed a little overly excited at the prospect of me moving out, it wasn't like my best friend was about to kick me out and leave me homeless. Besides there had to be something. I glanced along the board, there weren't many of apartments but still, there had to be something, maybe even a person willing to give me a couch until something opened up. At this point, I'd be thrilled to have a couch. Instead all I found was a place advertising the fact is was vacant and had just been fumigated after a slight bug problem and another place looking for a roommate that liked to have a good time. Neither sounded promising.

I threw my head back and groaned, letting my eyes fall on the trees, their leaves just starting to change colour to match the crisp autumn air. I could live outside, at least until the weather got bad. For as long as I could remember my and family and I had a going joke that one day I could live in a tent surrounded by trees and still be perfectly content. Of course my mom probably wouldn't love me doing that at the beginning of my medical school career.

One bedroom, that's all I was asking or, in a college town like Hanover there had to be some place decent to live.

I glanced at the trees again before looking back at the board. One last look and then I'd go home and maybe try again next week. Something had to open up by next week. Something...

Bush supporters need not apply.

I couldn't help but laugh when the line caught my eye. Anyone who thought to put that on an advertisement for anything had to gain a little bit of respect, and maybe it was the something. I glanced over it quickly; a girl, I hadn't considered living with a girl, mainly because I had lived with them my entire life but at least it meant I had some experience with it. It seemed her roommates had dropped out of school the first week, leaving one of the bedrooms in her clean apartment that was a very convenient three blocks away from the school empty. Apparently it was even right on the river and had an amazing view. And she didn't care what gender it was that she lived with.

It sounded perfect.

And something about it, the way she wrote or the tone or something, made me grab one of the hanging numbers off the bottom maybe a little faster than was necessary.

I had a number.

I might have something.

I smiled to myself as I shifted my heavy school bag on my shoulders before moving away from the bulletin board, glancing at the tiny paper before shoving it in my wallet.


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