Author's Notes: This is pretty ramble-y but I don't really care. I wrote something! And actually finished it! :D Take that curse! *secret, dorky handshake with muse*
Ahem. I should probably shut up and go to bed :S But if you know where that last bit above came from, you're my new best friend, kay?
She knocks at the door. Soft and a little hesitant even though inside, she'd love to pound on the offending obstacle until it caves in. She needs to see him, to see for herself.
She spins around. The white tip of a Converse shoe peeks out around the corner of the elevator. She takes a few steps forward. There he is, sitting on the steps leading up to the fifth floor, arms crossed and resting on his knees, eyes downcast. She doesn't understand why he's sitting out here. Almost like he's waiting for her to get home. Which is ridiculous and stupid and it's thoughts like this that make you cry and agree to electric toothbrushes.
"Hey." It's a lame opening, but it's all she's got. It's not like she ever had a plan on what to do if (when) this happened. Well, okay, she did. Several actually. But none were really legit. Just ideas. Fantasies.
"You okay?" Again lame. Come on, Penny. How many times did you want to scream whenever Amy or Bernadette asked that?
"Yeah. No. I don't know really." He shrugs. "Guess it's still new."
She nods even though he still isn't looking at her. She hesitates for a second and then sits down beside him.
"How did you know already?"
"Bernadette told me." She somehow manages to keep the frustration out of her voice. Because seriously how screwed up is it that she has to find out from Bernadette who found out from Howard who was told by Raj? Fourth hand information is not how the ex-girlfriend is supposed to find out. Correction. Fourth hand information is not how the friend is supposed to find out. Penny should've heard it directly. Would've heard it directly if it hadn't been for Priya shutting her out of his life. Can't blame her. Shouldn't blame her.
But she did leave Leonard. So Penny can blame her for that, right? Now she can hate her and be angry at her because Leonard and Priya aren't together anymore. Because Priya hurt him. Just like, nope, not going there either.
"I really liked her." And that's it. That's what sucks about this whole situation. He honestly liked her. Wanted to be in a relationship with her.
Penny swallows back a lump full of a dozen emotions. "I know." They're silent for a moment. She fights the urge to pick at the threads of the carpet's fraying edge.
"Did she say why?" It might be a little mean, but she needs to know. Or maybe just wants to know. Maybe she's still a little too selfish to care if answering that question would make it worse for him.
He shrugs again. "Just wasn't what she wanted."
Penny's head comes up at that. The swirling mess of confusing emotions giving way to pure anger. How dare she claim Leonard wasn't what she wanted! How dare she imply that there's someone better out there. That some other guy could make her happier. I thought she was supposed to be smarter than me.
"She's an idiot." Her voice is clear, void of the hesitation and caution she had been using. Leonard finally looks at her, eyes searching. For something, she doesn't know what. But she holds his gaze anyway, tries to tell him that he'll be okay, that everything could be okay if he wants it. She tries not to consider how life doesn't work that way, that it won't be okay, at least not as simply and easily as she wants to believe.
Leonard returns to staring at his shoes and Penny panics for a second until he speaks again.
"She's not an idiot." Penny looks away and fidgets with the sleeve of her jacket.
"She didn't really fit in though. With us, the group."
Penny's breath slows and she can't look away from her jacket sleeve. "No?"
"No." He pauses. "She would've never signed that Roommate Agreement."
"Well, you have to agree, Sheldon's conditions are pretty insane." She risks a glance and their eyes meet for a second. They both smile a little.
Leonard ducks his head. "Yeah they are insane. I guess Priya wouldn't have been wrong in refusing them." He sighs. "But still. She wasn't the right person."
"Yeah?" Penny hopes there's not something fatal about your heart pounding hard enough to hear without one of those stethoscope things. I should ask Amy.
"Yeah." They exchange faint smiles again. Penny starts to relax.
"This still sucks, though."
She nods. "I know."