"Monsieur Enjolras, will you talk to him for me?"
"What?" Enjolras put down his book, looking across the room at Éponine, "What are you going on about, girl?"
"Marius," Éponine looked at him a little exasperated, "I have been standing here talking to you about Marius, for several moments now. If you'd just put you damn books down for a minute."
"Don't talk out of place Éponine," Enjolras warned, sticking his finger in his book to mark his place. "You have my attention now."
"I was askin' you if you'd talk to Marius for me." Éponine blushed, shoving her hands into her pockets.
"Éponine, stop wasting your time on him. Haven't heard his constant prattle about the angel in the park?"
"Yes!" Éponine snapped, frowning. "I'm just tired of being alone! You do not understand what it's like."
"As a matter of fact, I quite like being alone." Enjolras motioned to his book, "It gives time for reflection and study."
Éponine pulled the chair at the table with Enjolras out, sitting down in front of him. "For one thing I can't read much more than my name and a few things that I've learned around the Inn. Secondly, I'd just like to 'ave someone. Someone to hold me and someone to be there for me."
Enjolras laughed, "It's not all its cut out to be in my opinion. Who wants to have to be accountable to another person at all times?"
"I would." Éponine wrung her hands together, "Someone 'sides my parents."
He chuckled again, sitting his book down on the table, "That I can see with you."
"It's not funny Monsieur! You'd not be laughing if you knew what they expected of me."
"And what would that be?"
"No," She shook her head, "Its unpleasant things."
"It cannot be any worse than you and you're want to be married."
"A prostitute." Éponine bit back, glaring at him. "But you're a man and I'm sure you think it's a perfectly suitable job for an urchin girl, with pretty hair and a pretty body."
Enjolras looked away, shaking his head. "I think I must be carrying myself all wrong if you think I'm the kind of gentleman that supports such a vulgar life."
"Well." Éponine pursed her lips, "If you don't talk to Marius and convince him to fall in love with me that's what'll 'appen."
Enjolras shook his head laughing at her, "Because a life with a boy who will never love you is a better life than one where you can at least earn a living."
"I do not want to sell myself many times an evening. If you saw the man my father's picked to 'ave first pickings at me, you would be sick." Éponine crossed her across her chest, "It's not the life I ever imagined 'aving."
"And what did you picture?"
She smiled, a faraway look in her eyes. "A strong, handsome, dark haired man. He would love me and he would keep me company whenever I felt lonely. We walked around the city hand in hand, or he could even walk beside me with his arm around my waist. He wouldn't think of me as just a poor foolish girl, a foolish ugly girl. He would see me as so much more."
Enjolras stared at her across the table, a smile on his lips.
"You think that I am foolish. Do not sit there and mock me!" She snarled, jerking up from the chair and rushing past him. He grabbed her arm in one swift move, "Let me go monsieur."
"I never said I thought you were a poor foolish ugly girl. Did I?" His lips curved up in a smirk.
"I do not understand," She glanced down at where his hand was tightly grasping her wrist.
"You are foolish, yes, for believing that Marius could ever be anymore than a spoiled boy. But, I have never thought that you were anymore than a mistreated girl who could have been, so much more."
Éponine felt a tremble rise up her throat as she looked down at Enjolras, "You do not mean this. You only mean to distract from Marius. Or even worse you intend to be the man that puts me on a street corner."
"I intend to do neither." Enjolras responded, his hand sliding up and down her arm.
"Then what do you intend to do?" Her eyes flickered closed as his hand moved against her skin. Is that what it felt like to be touched with a caring hand?
"I am content in my own solitary life, but I am not against having someone to share it with."
"No.. You don't mean that." Éponine laughed harshly, jerking away from his touch. "It cannot be true. No one would realistically want me."
"You were once in better circumstance, I know this. You can become someone accepted wherever you go." Enjolras rose to his feet, looking down at her.
She stared at the ground unable to look up at him. "You cannot mean this."
"Look at me Éponine." She looked up, his hand cupping her cheek. "What can I do to prove it?"
"Kiss me." She answered quickly, gulping back the lump in her throat.
Enjolras tilted her chin up; bring his lips down towards hers. Their lips brushed against each other in a feather like kiss. She was about to say that that did not count, when his lips met her lips fully. She gasped into the kiss as his hands moved to wrap around her waist and the other cupped the back of her head.
"You cannot really want me." Éponine pulled away from the kiss, her eyes wide with fear. "I could be any other girl."
"Have you seen me with any other girls?"
Éponine shook her head, "No."
"Exactly," He murmured, kissing her cheek, her jaw, her neck.
"Monsieur.." She closed her eyes, enjoying his touch more than she was willing to admit.
"My books have always kept me satisfied, they have romance and action." He pulled back, looking down at her and pushing her hair behind her ear.
"Then why now? Why me?"
"Why not you? You are a loyal woman, you are honest, you are naturally intelligent, you could be gorgeous, and-"
"Stop, stop, stop." She pulled away from him, sinking into the chair closest to her. "Just stop. I want to believe you. I do.. But I have known too many women who have told me to be weary of men who promise you everything."
"I'm promising you nothing." Enjolras retorted, "I'm telling you that I find you companionable. I can rescue you from this life you fear you'll be forced into. I can offer you shelter, a comfortable life, friendship, companionship. Everything you asked for. I will not offer undying love, the love of a friend yes. A marriage of convenience."
"Marriage?" Her eyes shot open wider. "You lie."
"I will take you to the Mayor and ask for a licence tonight."
"You say you like your life to be lived alone."
"But, I would not be against having someone to talk to about my philosophies and what I am reading. The boys here at the cafe are getting bored with me."
Éponine laughed, "This is all too much."
"Then you want to become a prostitute?"
"No! But you told me it would be no worse than marrying Marius! How is a marriage of convenience to you any better?"
"Because Marius will break your heart when he finds someone else to give his attentions to, but I have no desires to be the great romancer he illusions to be."
"Fine what?" Enjolras cocked his eye brow.
Éponine nodded her head, standing up slowly. "Let's go to the Mayor tonight. We can be wed in the morning."
"You mean it? You want this?"
"I have no choice, if I wait around for Marius, I am sure I will end up being forced into selling body to some lowlife man of power. If I marry you I can have a safe life.."
"Éponine," He smiled. "I am glad that you understand all of this. I just want what's best for you."
"Yes, yes. And I understand that you do not want you friends to think that you are comfortable with your life as an abstaining monk." They both shared a mocking glance, both bursting out in laughter.
"You see, we can mock one another and laugh together. That is all that is needed for a life spent in shared solitude," Enjolras gave her a grin.
Éponine reached her hand towards his, slow and unsurely. "All I need is someone who will be by my side when I need them." Her fingers slowly wrapped around his, both were watching the action.
"Then what are we waiting for?"
A/N: After because I wanted the jump start at the beginning. Enjolras = Ramin Karimloo and Éponine = Samantha Barks.