She's like cold coffee in the morning
I'm drunk off last nights whisky and coke
She'll make me shiver without warning
And make me laugh as if I'm in on the joke
And you can stay with me forever
~Cold Coffee, Ed Sheeran (song)
"That's half?" I teased while Kat frowned at me. Her black locks trailed in a soft curls down her shoulders, tucked under an adorable winter knit hat.
"You said you didn't want that much," Kat argued petulantly, while she dug her fork into our slice of cheesecake. I watched her eat it with a look of contentment on her face.
It was a blustery autumn day and the gusty wind warned of the coming winter. Crumpled leaves lined the streets adding brilliant colors of red, orange, and yellow to the boring black concrete.
I sipped my warm mug of coffee, feeling the bitter taste warm me from the inside out. For once I felt completely and utterly comfortable with my current surroundings.
Kat's brow crinkled, "What's wrong?"
"Nothing at all."
And I smiled at her, and leaned forward opening my mouth widely. She rolled her eyes, but picked up the fork nevertheless, and fed me some cheesecake.
I grinned at her exasperated expression. For the next leisurely hour or so we sat there all bundled up talking about nothing at all while the sky slowly dimmed to a soft blue and lavender.
"Let's go," I whispered as I drained the last bit of my coffee and stood up. Kat got up and I curled my arm around her petite body in such a way that we managed to fit each other perfectly. We were two separate halves of a whole.
She shivered and rested her head on my shoulder - seeking out my warmth and I shrugged out of my own coat so I could sling it around her.
She gave me a thankful smile and paused so I could button her up. My fingers skimmed her chin as I did the top button.
"Thanks," she said.
"No problem," I whispered back and leaned in for the second time that night, and kissed her nose. She wrinkled her nose and let out a small giggle before tugging on my shirt and pulling me in for a proper kiss.
I didn't resist and was met with her gentle, soft lips kissing my own. She was much sweeter than my cup of coffee, and warmed me up the same way. When we pulled away her usually pale cheeks were rosy and she gave me a small smile before we started walking once more.
Leaves crunched beneath our feet as the night descended upon us.
A/N: Another long A/N, skip to the bottom to see the Hale/Kat playlist (ha, do you remember that?).
So...40 chapters? A little more than 500 reviews? I'm in shock, and I know most people wait to do all this reflection stuff until maybe their 50th chapter but now just felt like the right time...
When I started this fic. I was really just a beginner in all things FF. I never would have guessed that I'd write so much and spend so much time on these chapters. This story in particular is like my baby. It has helped me so much with exploring characterization and finding my own sort of writing style. And the reception I got from doing something so unoriginal like writing a story in a different character's POV is amazing. I've loved hearing from all of you that have ever reviewed and even though I don't always respond I've always appreciated the support.
Another funny thing about this fic is that I made some really good FF friends through this. One of them being Official Scroll Keeper who has been an amazing supporter through all of my stories and writing endeavors. If you're reading this OSK...well thank you so much :) You're amazing and I wish I could give you a hug. I hope you're having an amazing time in college.
Another is Sakura Martinez who has also been an amazing supporter. I've loved hearing her reviews and talking to her. She's also the one who has designed all of my fabulous book covers that I love so dearly. If you're reading this then I hope you're having a fantastic time darling. I have yet to read your book but I will soon!
As for the future? Well, I've been debating the future of this story. It's been a wonderful run and I've loved writing this long collection of one-shots. It's incredibly freeing when you don't have a plot that you're tied to. Every time I sit down to write a chapter it's like a new adventure. What's going to pop up into my head next? But lately my inspiration has been thin and my motivation scattered. I'm waiting eagerly for Ms. Ally Carter to release Perfect Scoundrels so I can have some new material and more Hale to work with. So until then, nothing is definite. I'm sorry, however about the long wait in between chapters. My parents have been on my case about grades and schoolwork and band eats up all my time. Not to mention I'm focused on my Fiction Press story, so my FF acount hasn't gotten much love recently.
So...can you tell that I'm ready for autumn/winter? Gosh, where I live it's still summer and I'm so looking forward to replace my shorts with sweatpants and trade my short-sleeve shirts for sweaters. It is getting a bit colder and crisper but by the afternoon it's like a regular August day. What's the weather like where you live? My favorite season alternates regularly between summer and winter. By the end of summer I'm eagerly waiting for winter and the same goes for the end of winter.
If any of you are wondering how I (or anyone at my school) is doing after Sept. 12 it's been...well, going. Life continued but we did wear teal in honor of her on the Friday after her passing. I hope all of you are well.
And without further ado...The Unofficial Hale/Kat Playlist compiled by you lovely reviewers (in order):
1. Breathe by Taylor Swift (submitted by Sasha. "You're the only thing I know like the back of my hand".)
2. Tonight, Not Again by Jason Mraz (submitted by me: because I feel like it really does capture Hale and all of his turbulent emotions when Kat leaves him to go off and do her thing. Poor guy.)
3. The Man Who Can't Be Moved by The Script (submitted by clarinetto14: because Hale always waits/comes back for Kat...)
4. Chasing Cars by Snow Patrol (submitted by Ripplerose: I think this would work because Hale just wants to be with Kat, he just wants to stay with her, and he wants her to notice that.)
5. If You're Not the One by Daniel Bedingfield (submitted by Ripplerose: I think this because if makes me think of Kat and Hale's past and present relationship as well as their thoughts on the future of the nature of their dating.)
6. Gracious by Ben Howard (submitted by me: because it portrays Kat's elusive nature especially with the line "Gracious goes the ghost of you...")
7. What I Wanted to Say by Colbie Caillat (submitted by Sakura Martinez: Kat. Kat likes to leave. She likes to keep her feelings (as well as things) to herself and can, like, have a million things she could say (especially to Hale) and, as we all know, Hale can see right through her. This song makes me think of Kat.)
8. I'd Lie by Taylor Swift (submitted by both Sasha and Taylorxx "And if you ask me if I love him, I'd lie.")
9. You Don't Know Her Like I Do by Brantley Gilbert (submitted by The One You Never Suspected "You don't know we've been through / That girl's my best friend...")
10. If You're Leavin' by Glorianna (submitted by Sakura Martinez: Another song I'd like to think as a soundtrack to whenever Hale & Kat are arguing, especially with regards to Kat leaving.)
11. Give Your Heart a Break by Demi Lovato (submitted by clarinetto14: because it seems like Kat is scared of getting involved with Hale.)
12. My Immortal by Evanescence (submitted by ISpyANinjaAndItsMe "When you cried I'd wipe away all of your tears / When you'd scream I'd fight away all of your fears / And I held your hand through all of these years".)
13. Amazed by Lonestar (submitted by The One You Never Suspected "I wanna spend the whole night in your eyes".)
All things followed by quotations are song lyrics and the rest are reasons why reviewers chose their respective songs. The Unnofficial Kat/Hale Playlist is available on Youtube under my username: AMessofPickles (minus #13 because the darn thing wouldn't work in a playlist).
Thank you, again, to every single one of you that has read this story. I appreciate it so much. I hope you have an amazing week!