Told you I'd be back.
The low whispers were like a hook on her ears, heaving her upwards towards the unseeing source. So she was sleeping, then. It must have been deeply. A warm hand swept past her forehead. She blinked her eyes open.
She was met with Gary Oldman sat still before her in an armchair by her bed, and what a sight he was. It was dark, possibly in the early hours. And his skin looked milky pale in the spilled light from the window. Secret shadows rippled and leaked over the bed which she lay in. With his messy stubble covering his neck and jaw, his crisp navy shirt and those blasted dancing eyes, he was better than she imagined.
"Here she is." His voice was rough yet doused with a sweetness he was all too capable of, yet rarely showed. He was smiling and she smiled back instinctively, immediately drawn to his lips. "You forgot I was here."
A hint of accusation.
"I did, kind of," she said, with a soft laugh. "But I'm glad you are. What happened? Why am I asleep and you're not?"
"Probably the hangover has something to do with it." He quirked his eyebrows and knitted his fingers together solemnly, and she waited for him to drop one of his amusing jokes. "Or perhaps it is the emotional exhaustion of telling an old man that you're in love with him. That can take a lot out of you."
There it was, although, technically it was no joke.
"Shush," she murmured sleepily, "you're not old."
He cracked a grin and shook his head. "Oh love, don't make a fool out of yourself or of me."
"Okay fine, you are old."
"Does that bother you?"
She pursed her lips and thought for a moment, then shook her head. "If you were younger, we'd never have met. And if I was older, we'd never have met, so I guess you could say we are the ages we are supposed to be."
"You're right," he affirmed, his eyes twinkled approvingly. "Older or younger, it doesn't really matter. Fuck what other people think. We both know this has only ever been about us."
"It's taken me five years to accept that, I think."
She swallowed and furrowed her brow. Their honesty was refreshing, even if a little surprising. Had they always been so honest and open? She could hardly recall, maybe it was because she'd just woken up and she felt inexpressibly calm and comfortable. At ease with him, and most importantly, at ease with herself.
They were no longer in bustling New York streets with their soles hitting the hard ground as they ran away from their problems and away from each other. No longer were they catching each other's eyes with a sea of nobody's separating them. No longer were they fighting to get the last word, pushing each other against walls, yelling down phones and hurting their throats. And no, they were no longer were kissing with honking taxis waiting in the rain. This time round there was no one else around, and all was quiet. For one of the first times, she felt mature. She felt ready for some milestone, and whatever that may bring.
"So what did happen last night?" she asked, genuinely interested. She had missed their conversations most, and she was older now.
"We had a couple of drinks and you fell asleep half way through a film."
"Cuppa tea - lovely it was."
"Oh, what film?"
"The Godfather part II."
"I'm surprised," she said, and sounded it too. "I thought you'd make me watch one of your films. You're still hurt that I haven't seen them, I know you are."
"Give it time, love. You will."
She remembered it as if it were yesterday. Him: stiffly annoyed, dressed as Sirius Black. Her: a naïve young girl, laughing at nothing together on the set of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. They had been filming Sirius's death scene, but in the time between then and now it oddly felt that she was the one that had died and come back.
So much had happened since. How she'd grown up, how they had torn each other apart. Yet, look at them now. She remained hopeful today.
She kicked her leg out of the duvet and dropped her foot lazily on his knee. "Are you going to sit there all night? Come here."
He hesitated for a moment, glancing down at her foot, the same one he'd kissed earlier.
"Please," she added, softly, but not entirely certainly.
She didn't know quite if this was a good idea. Still, her eyes caught his longingly, and he swallowed and the chair creaked as he stood. That was it - that was all it took. She felt his weight on the bed as he leant over and crawled to her side.
He lay with her then, resting his elbow on the pillow. The hundreds of miles between them had been replaced by inches. His glasses had slid down his nose, and his long hair was tousled from running his hand through it. She couldn't put what she felt into words, looking at him. He belonged there.
From the corner of her eye she saw that his shirt had ridden up slightly, and a trail of dark hair disappeared into his trousers. Like a switch, her whole body suddenly ached with some palpable need. She couldn't un-see it and she couldn't concentrate.
"I'd never thought I'd live to see the day, us, like this."
She tried to regulate her breathing, and focus on his words. He had noticed, and his eyes sparked with amusement.
"Don't be nervous. It's only me."
"Only you," she repeated, and rolled her eyes and laughed. His eyes softened at the sound. "That doesn't help when it's because of you that I'm... Don't you ever feel scared about it all?"
"Sometimes. It's natural to," he spoke quietly, and she couldn't stop staring. He ran his hand down her cheek, his thumb brushed her bottom lip. "I know it scares you, all this. It's going to be alright."
"But what if it isn't?"
"I will make it."
Without warning, she rolled into him. It was only a matter of time. It had been a matter of hours since they'd kissed, yet already it had been too long. When their lips met she almost whimpered and pressed into his chest. Her hand gripped his neck, her thumb pressed on his throat.
She loved feeling him under her fingertips, just there. She could feel his hand slide past her knee and up her bare thigh, burning her skin in its wake. He still had his cold ring on, it made her hotter. She wanted him.
Go further, she wanted to sigh and breathe into his neck. She would beg for it, given the chance. He stopped abruptly and his fingers dug into her, just below her knickers. He'd fallen short, teetering over the edge of something that would change them forever.
Just a bit further and he would've been there.
"Go further, please."
She curled her leg around his. They were closer than they ever had been. What was hers was now rightfully his. She hadn't planned what to do next, but she found herself dragging her hand from his neck to her thigh, where he was waiting. She interlaced her fingers with his, and pushed his hand upwards. He was so close. He would be able to feel how much she wanted it so soon.
"Em, we can't rush this," he rasped, his voice was shaking. His eyes were darker than the room around them.
"How long do we have to wait?"
She was all defiance and urgency. Their hands were unmoved, as they gazed at each other. He was looking at her in such a way that made her breathe catch, it almost made her want to cry. A beat of quiet and they hastened into a crushing kiss again, and again. Each time they met his arms never moved from around her.
"You done this before?" he broke their kiss with a growl.
He was tugging her jumper off. His hands were there and everywhere. His fingers were splayed over her like oceans spreading on the map. They got into all of her nooks and crannies, the dark places, they made her breathe shake and her voice sing.
"Yes, many times."
"Who the fuck was it?" his voice was low, unrelenting. "Was it that cunt-"
"Gary stop," she snapped hotly, "now is not the time."
She found his belt and yanked on the leather, the hole popped and released. She could hardly wait. His shirt was flung behind them in a haze of rushed whispers, gasps and wet kisses, and before she knew she was touching all of him. He was so worth it. He was worth everything, thick and perfect. All man. He closed his eyes and groaned her name.
She could hardly believe it was happening. It was this. This is what she had craved all these years. The struggle of it - the hard-wrought emotion. This entire time it was for him, and his rawness, his aging and beautiful body. Him, and his stubborn tongue - as much as he could give, she would take it.
She thought about this as they watched each other stormily. Their hands were atop of each other as her knickers were drawn down slowly. She was already sopping. When his fingers touched her, at last, her eyes snapped open and fell again. Her toes curled. It had barely begun and it was about to end very soon. He leant over her, stroking her wild hair.
"Marry me one day, will you?"
"Okay," she said instinctively and opened her thighs to him.
She woke some hours later, lips cracked dry with thirst and her insides aching. It had been a while since she'd had that, and even then it had never been like that. She felt that Gary had taken something from her and given something to her too. She was changed, and she was content.
He was sleeping still, his mouth slightly ajar. His hair was shaggier and his stubble was darker than ever. She watched him and played with him until his eyes fluttered open.
He hardened beneath her. His steady hands prised her knees apart and he sunk into her with a low moan, starting roughly up again. Every now and then they would crumble into gentle love-making, where she captured parts of him she was sure she'd never seen, or he'd never shown, to anyone.
They went on all afternoon and well into the evening; four times, five times, six. When they weren't they were fondling, laughing raucously or eating, and there was no in-between. That was how they existed, quite unaware of the time, quite happy. The curtains remained closed, and the outside world saw no sight or sound of Emma Watson or Gary Oldman.
"What time is your flight?" she said, at long last. She had pulled apart each syllable and mustered all the casualness she could.
She was sat up in bed, sipping on a cup of tea he'd made her some time before, which had now turned lukewarm. She was absolutely spent and her eyelids drooped heavily in anticipation of a twelve-hour sleep, but she knew better than that. It would be four hours, and she'd be ready to go again. Damn man.
Gary lay beside her, gloriously naked. Dark hair smattered his chest and grew heavier the further down his body, pooling around his cock. She could see his seed drying on his chest, and could feel it on her breasts and in-between her thighs, and found she didn't care at all. She watched him with sweet fondness as he brought his left hand to rest on her abdomen and lit the cigarette dangling from his lips.
"Tomorrow morning, back to LA," he sighed. "Don't remind me."
"I don't want you to go."
"But I have to," he said, and his eyes flashed miserably. "Real life beckons, as it is prone to do. I have to go back so you can go back to college without any distractions. I want you to do well." He suddenly turned to her. "Am I going to see you again? Are you… going to want to do this again?"
He tensed his jaw, waiting. She pursed her lips, she hated these conversations. Hated the look in his eyes, like he was preparing himself for disappointment. To be fair to him, that was what she usually gave him. All the goodbyes played in her head, and she tried to think of what one hurt the most. And couldn't.
"Yes, of course, but -"
"Be careful, now."
"We need to talk properly about what this is, about what we want."
"I want to be with you. I want you to be my wife. I want to live out every day with you, like we have done today. This is it for me, Em."
"But that's not now, is it? What about now? What about your wife now?"
"I'll tell her."
Emma nearly choked on her tea. She grasped the handle to stop it from falling. "You cannot tell her about me. You cannot tell her about any of this." She was adamant about that.
"But it's the truth, is it not?"
"Even so, it will break her heart. You can't put that on her, Gary."
"At least that way she'll understand."
"No." She put her mug to one side and gripped his hand so painfully he winced. "I do not want to be associated with the breakdown of your marriage. Even if it was me, I don't want it. I never asked for any of this to happen. This is why I fought so hard against it for so long!"
"What are they going to say in the press? Can you imagine the papers? It's going to be fucking awful, they'll paint me as a scarlet woman, a marriage wrecker, when it was never like that-"
"Emma, listen to me-"
"And you'll be an old man who seduced a young girl, when it was never like that either. Gary, please, you cannot let this happen."
"Then what the fuck am I supposed to do? Just leave the house that we live in together in the middle of the night, without saying a word?"
She buried her face in her hands, frustration clinging at her fingers and biting at her lips.
"Anything, it's your call. I just don't want to be involved."
He lay silently, staring at her, his chest rising and falling. He took several long drags of his cigarette, brow furrowed in deep contemplation, before he stubbed it out. It bent inwards and caved in, much like how her insides felt. She squeezed his hand, helpless.
"Please, think about it."
"Alright, I will. But she's going to know it's over soon."
The following morning his leather satchel was at the front door, waiting. He didn't have much to pack. He threw in his toothbrush and dirty boxers he'd picked up from the floor and looked around.
"I think that's everything."
"That was fast."
She hovered in the hallway wearing the same jumper he'd ripped off the day before. He looked at her and she smiled in spite of the numbing pain. Gary was a man made for bright mornings with the sun in his eyes and angsty evenings with his hair falling in front of them. On that morning particular, he looked more handsome than she had ever seen him.
"You sure you don't want me to make you another coffee?"
"No love, you've done wonderfully."
She couldn't bear to do this again. No one had told her that in life watching those you love leave never got easier – she hoped it would. These goodbyes that were all too familiar were always the moments she replayed when she was left alone. And, inevitably, she would be alone again soon. Any moment now. She wiped a tear from her eye.
"Thank you for coming," she managed. "It was the best surprise. This past day has been…"
She shook her head, at a loss, and he nodded.
"I know. And to think I nearly left last night." He shook his head then, and she noticed his eyes were awash with emotion. "What a silly man I'd have been."
"Only because I pushed you to leave. This time… well," she started to laugh, because if she didn't she knew she'd cry. "I've not wanted you to stay more."
He pulled her into him and she wrapped his arms around his waist. Her cheek was against his chest, his lips kissing her forehead. She breathed in his scent, knowing that when he left it would disappear with each passing day. In a week or two, when her head was swimming with college exams she'd be able to trick herself that he'd never come. Maybe he would, too, and that would be it. They could both get on their lives.
Even as she thought it, she knew it was a lie. This time it was different. This time, they'd left a mark on each other that would not cease to exist, no matter what came for them next.
"I love you."
"I know," he grinned and it met his eyes perfectly. "I've always known. I've got to go."
"I'll call you," she said.
He stopped and gazed at her. "Will you? Fucking finally."
She laughed weakly and he lips twitched into a smirk. He kissed her hard once more. When they broke apart he murmured that he loved her into her hair and picked up his bag.
"Have a safe flight."
He winked at her and she watched as he opened the door and stepped out in the world. She was willing down the sobs that were about to bubble out of her when she heard it.
A swift, rapid sound: a snap, followed by a click and another snap, louder than the first. The door fell open again and a camera flash blinded her eyes.
He swore and immediately stepped back inside the house and wrenched the door shut behind him with a crash. They were alone, but it didn't keep out the noise. Shouts erupted from outside. People were calling his name, and to her horror, her name as well. Gary's beautiful eyes, usually a calm and stormy blue, were wild with panic.
"It's the paps, loads of them," he cursed, "they saw us."
I love this story, which is why I came back to it. However, I plan to edit parts of it which I am no longer happy with. Namely, to make the dialogue a little more realistic. I hope you will re-read it with as much joy as the first time around (hopefully more.). I owe you so much thanks for sticking with me. It's been nearly two years. I hope you guys have smashed life in the meantime. See you soon X