TITLE: Right Time, Wrong Hardy

AUTHOR: Simply-Cath

DISTRIBUTION: Get my permission before posting it anywhere.

DISCLAIMER: Characters don't belong to me; they're all their own, plus whatever bits WWE and TNA own. Not making any profit off this or implying anything about anyone's lifestyle choices.

RATING: PG-13 to be safe

CONTENT: Slashy content, bad language.


SUMMARY: Right from the start, Rob's date doesn't go as planned. That's not always bad.

NOTES: Part of the Super Special Awesome Spring Slash Lovers Prompt. Very sorry I'm so late on this, but I hope the one who made the request really likes it!

Right Time, Wrong Hardy

By: Catherine

"This is all your fault, you know." Rob Van Dam said as he packed the last of his things into his gym bag. He was not particularly angry – Matt was a nice guy after all - but after dating one brother it would be kind of hard to ask out the other.

"I'm sure I don't know what you're talking about," Shannon said, stretching out his accent into a ludicrous drawl. His bag was already packed and he propped his feet up on it as he watched Rob's progress. "How in the hell do you always manage to find hair ties that match your shirt, man? That shit's just weird."

"You're one to talk about weird," Rob returned, tightening his ponytail. "And you know damn well what I'm talking about. I asked you for Jeff's number and you gave me Matt's. And now I'm on a date with him."

Shannon's eyes glittered. "Oh, Rob, give Matt a chance. He might just surprise you."

Before Rob could reply, there was a knock at the door.

The last thing Rob saw of Shannon was a Cheshire grin and a thumbs up.

Matt was dressed down in a pair of baggy jeans and a designer T-shirt. He smiled and nodded to some of the others he knew, but his grin widened at the sight of Rob. "Hey man, good to see you. Come on now, we should probably get out of here before Jeff decides to go streaking and we gotta bail him out."

Rob had to bite back a wistful sigh at the mental image.

"So, where are you taking me?" Matt asked as they pulled out of the arena's parking lot.

That was the question Rob had had from the moment he'd hung up the phone: what do you do with Matt Hardy? Sushi for dinner was an obvious choice, but after that, he didn't quite know. "How about some coffee?" That would be a good time killer, he supposed. Give him a few minutes to figure out his next course of action.

Matt blinked in surprise. "Um, okay, sounds good."

They were silent for a few minutes until Matt started laughing.

"What's so funny?" Rob looked over quickly.

Matt pointed straight ahead, gesturing to the brightly lit Ferris wheel at the end of the street. "Man, you totally had me! I can't believe I thought you of all people would wanna go out for coffee. You may be a lot of things, Rob, but boring isn't one of them."

"Right," Rob arched an eyebrow and then smiled. He drove past the coffee house and continued on down the street towards the carnival. Surprisingly, the parking lot for the fair wasn't all that busy, so Rob was able to find a spot right up in front. He had to bite back a laugh when Matt made a big show of leaping out of the car, then sliding across the hood to open Rob's door for him.

"What are we gonna do first?" Matt asked as he finished paying for his tickets and started glancing around at the other attractions.

Rob opened his mouth to answer, but Matt took off running towards the tilt-a-whirl, whooping like a six year old. Shrugging, Rob broke into a light jog and followed him. The line-up was fairly short, and they were seated right away. Rob grunted in surprise when he felt Matt's hand make itself at home on his thigh. He glanced over at the other man, but Matt was looking straight ahead.

A few moments later the ride started up and the hand tightened its grip a little bit. "You scared, Matt?" He teased.

"Nah, man," Matt drawled, his fingers tightening once again. "Just sampling the merchandise."

"You know," Matt said with a small grin. "Me and Jeff got our start working the fairgrounds. This is kinda like a homecoming." With that, Matt made his way over to the games.

"Dude, those things are totally rigged."

Matt said nothing, merely offered him a knowing grin. He paid for a bucket of rings and made a show of sifting through it, searching for the right one. Then, he set his stance, cracked his knuckles and let it fly. The ring arced through the air. As the ring clanged around the neck of the bottle, Matt looked over at Rob, "Well of course they are, Rob! But who do you think helped to rig 'em?"

A dozen perfect ring tosses and two six-foot-tall stuffed flamingos later found Rob and Matt wandering through the rides. As the time passed and they traded wrestling stories, then travel stories, then party stories, Rob found himself completely forgetting his earlier disappointment. He slid a half step closer to Matt. Rob took his hand out of his pocket and gave Matt's hand a surreptitious squeeze.

Matt's smile widened and just as he opened his mouth to speak, he got bumped into hard enough to stagger him back a step. "What the hell?"

Standing before them, now slathered in beer, was Scott Hall. "Hey yo, champ!" He slurred, leaning against one of the tent posts for support. "Never figured you for a carnie type."

"Yeah, well-" Rob trailed off, shrugging.

"And I never woulda figured you for a Matt type either," Hall burped.

"Excuse me?" Matt's brows drew together in a polite frown.

"Oh, you didn't know?" Hall smirked.

"Scott-" Rob began. "Look man, how about I buy you another round and we can just forget we ever met?"

"Aww, man that ain't cool," Hall walked over, slinging an arm around Matt's shoulders. "I gotta say I'm a little surprised; ol' Rob here's been sniffing around your brother for weeks now. What are ya – pitch hitting for Jeffro?"

Rob felt himself get colder. He looked over and he winced as he caught sight of Matt's expression. The man was staring between the two of them, looking as if someone had punched him in the gut. Despite his fresh tan, Matt had gone pale. Rob swallowed hard, torn between shooing Hall off and explaining himself to Matt. In the end, he decided to go for what was important. "Look, Matt-"

"Don't, Rob," Matt interrupted him, staring off into the distance. He took another step away from the two and tried to smile. Matt shook his head. "Don't worry about it Rob. Believe me, it's not like you're the first." With those words, Matt walked off and disappeared into the crowd.

Rob started to go after him, but was sidetracked by the sound of Hall's snickers. He turned and glared at the man, narrowing his eyes. "What the hell is your problem?" He snapped.

"Hey man," Hall leered, tipping back what was left in the glass and dropped it. "I don't got any problems. But I think you do. And hey yo, now that you're free, how about we-?"

"Excuse me, sir," a man interrupted clearly some kind of rent-a-cop security guy. Rob couldn't help but wonder what the hell kind of carnival had booze and security. "Do you know this man?" He asked, gesturing to Hall.

"Hey, man, hell yeah he knows me! Hell yeah the champ knows who I am, Chico!"

"Actually, officer," Rob smiled slowly. He usually trusted Karma to enact its own revenge, but in this case, Van Dam couldn't help but take advantage of this particular situation. "Never seen him before in my life."

"Sir, you were asked to leave and I'm afraid I'm going to have to escort you out." The guard grabbed Hall around the upper arm and started to escort him towards the exit, ignoring his shouts and slurred insults.

That done, Rob turned away, trying to find Matt.

From his new vantage point at the top of the Ferris wheel, Matt spotted security trying to toss out some drunken guy. From the looks of things, he was giving them one hell of a fight. That was just fine with Matt; it would give him a good chance to sneak out without anyone noticing him. Though the prospect of a night in his hotel room nursing his wounded pride was far from appealing, Matt certainly didn't want to stay here. He shook his head, resting his chin in his hand. How could he have been so damn stupid, thinking Rob wanted to spend time with him? "Of course he'd want to be with Jeff," he muttered. "They freaking work together; the hell was I thinking?" Rolling his eyes, he started to shift his weight back and forth causing his cart to rock.

Rob made his way over to the Ferris wheel and glanced up. For a brief moment, Matt was illuminated by one of the spotlights emanating from the Tunnel of Love. Glancing around, Van Dam noticed that security was still preoccupied in tossing out Hall. He did one more quick check to make sure no one was looking, and then started to scale the Ferris wheel like a steel cage.

Matt stared dully out at the horizon, still rocking his car. His attention was only snagged when he realized that a lot of people were shouting. He glanced around, finally spotting the source of the commotion. He slapped a hand to his forehead before yelling: "JEFF! FOR THE LOVE OF GOD-!" He paused, mid shout, when he realized who it was. "Rob?"

Rob took a deep breath and timed his jump, gripping the side of Matt's car. As if he were in the ring, he didn't give himself time to think and simply swung his legs inside, dropping into the spot beside the dark haired Hardy. "Um, is this seat taken?"

Matt stared at him for a long time. "Well I was going to ask you if you were crazy, but I guess that answered the question for me."

"Listen, Matt..." Funny how climbing up the Ferris wheel had been the easiest part of this conversation; "I wanted to explain about tonight."

"You wanted the other Hardy. Like I said, you're not the first." Matt ran his fingers through his hair.

"I'm not going to lie to you; I did want to ask Jeff out, but you're pretty cool." Rob winced; that had sounded a hell of a lot better in his head.

"Look," Matt turned away, staring at the skyline again. "If you want your flamingo back, I'll send it along with Jeff at the next taping. Hell, it'll make a great conversation started for the two of you."

"Dude, I just climbed a Ferris wheel for you," Rob pointed out. "I wouldn't do that for some stupid flamingo. I'm sorry about the way things went down tonight, but I'm not sorry they happened."

"What's that supposed to mean?"

"You're not my second choice."

"I wasn't your first."

Rob pressed his lips together; there wasn't anything he could say in response that wouldn't sound forced. Instead, he shrugged. "How about we start over?"

Matt turned to look at him. "Matt Hardy, nice to meet you."

Rob pointed his thumbs towards himself; "Rob. Van. Dam."

The corner of his mouth quirked upwards slightly as Matt made the V-1 symbol with his hand, "And I .... Will. Not. Die."

Taking advantage of the moment, Rob leaned in and kissed him quickly. To his surprise, Matt continued the kiss. Rob jumped when he felt Matt pinch his ass. "So much for taking things slow."

"Well we won't have time for much else unless they put us in lockup together."

"What?" Rob blinked. He followed Matt's gaze and spotted the gaggle of security waiting at the Ferris wheel's exit. "Oh yeah." He looked around, trying to spot their quickest escape route. There was a hip high fence that nobody was watching. It didn't head towards, the exit, but it would provide them a temporary escape. "Tunnel of Love?" He offered as the ride came to a stop and the safety bar binding Matt's hips lifted.

"Count of..." Matt suddenly leapt up, taking off at a full sprint. "Three!"

"Son of a--!" Rob bolted after him, taking the fence in a single jump.

Matt laughed as he bolted for the line, managing to hop into one of the seats. "Move your ass, Van Dam!" He shouted as the boat began to move towards the blackened entrance.

For the second time that night, Rob Van Dam found himself making a crazy assed leap for the benefit of Matt Hardy's company. At least there was no safety bar this time. He grunted and collapsed into the seat, panting. "We are SO getting tossed out of here, dude."

"Well then," Matt started fumbling for something in his back pocket. "We should at least make it interesting before we do." He pulled out a small bottle of lubricant and held it up so Rob could read the label.

"Dude, you are my kind of interesting," Rob drawled.