I'd just thought I'd say high to all those readers and reviewers that have kept me going over the past few months. It's been a really tough few months, and the start of my gap year has not turned out like I thought it would last time I updated - even though it was only a authors note AND I'M DEADLY SERIOUSLY SORRY FOR PUTTING THAT UP THERE FOLKS!
As you can see my capital letters states all...
So here's a little explanation to your late, late, late Christmas Present.
This was something that I thought of after I saw the Curse of Clyde Langer - that episode nearly made me cry! Seriously, I do think of Clyde being the strongest character in the show, and I love him to bits, and the final episode where he and Rani were fake husband and wife made me giggle!
I really like the final episode cause you see the effect that it had on their normally rock solid relationship and I was wondering how they were going to write their relationship back into fruition - but I have to say that they did it very, very well and effectively.
So here it is folks, my closure, it's one massive one shot, and I didn't realise how long it actually is, but it's been really fun to write. I'm not saying it's the last one that I'll ever write, but it looks to be the last for a while. As I have some resits to do and driving tests and music exams and music development and job hunting... the list goes on. But I'm still around, so if you want to contact me my PM or are in need of a beta I'm always here and willing to help.
Thank-you to all my loyal readers and reviewers, I'm touched that you have supported me continuously this far, and to date Too Much is still my highest reviewed and read story.
Thanks and goodbye, and I hope your New Year brings you happiness and joy for the year ahead.
It was getting to around midnight as Carla Langer sat in her empty house, she was hunched around a cup of tea, drumming her fingers in a rhythmic pattern on the mug. The mug itself was a pale sky blue, and was decorated in a childish rainbow with a few fluffy clouds. Underneath the rainbow there were two stick figures, holding hands, the taller one had long dark brown hair whilst the shorter one had no hair. It was her favourite mug, and yes Carla felt rather pathetic in saying it, but it was the first thing that her son had ever painted, at the tender age of four and a half. Now her boy was at the not so tender age of seventeen, and had not been home in more than a day.
Not that she had minded, she'd received a text from him around five saying that he was hanging at Sarah-Jane's house. Shaking her head Carla sighed, what the teenager did round that woman's house she never knew, but she'd not gotten any word from him in the last six hours, and she really was starting to worry. Lifting the mug to her mouth she took a sip out of the tepid tea, grimacing at its cold bitter taste she stood and tipped the tea down the sink. Carla took a glance at the clock, it read quarter past twelve, and she hesitated biting her lip.
The second hand clicked to sixteen past twelve.
Damn it! She couldn't take it any longer! Leaving the cup in the sink she snatched up the phone, and pressed call.
The sound of the house phone woke a rowan haired woman as she slept curled up in her double bed. A tuft of hair poked out from underneath the pillows, and she let out a moan as she reached for the phone on her nightstand. Blearily she glanced up at the clock, and it read 00:17 in its glaring fluorescent red. Grabbing the phone she answered the call, hoping that it hadn't woken her young daughter downstairs.
Sky could be very nosey when she wanted to.
"Hello?" the elder woman tried to cover up a yawn as she propped herself up on the pillows, hoping this was an important call.
"Sarah-Jane?" the questionable voice asked on the other end.
"Carla?" she scrubbed the sleep out of her eyes, wondering why her friends' mother was calling her so late at night.
"Sorry I didn't mean to wake you," came the hurried reply. It was then Sarah-Jane noticed the worry in the other woman's voice, being a journalist did have its advantages.
"It's alright," she paused, and reached over to put on her glasses. "What's wrong?"
"Have you seen Clyde?"
Sarah's heart stopped in her mouth, ever since the incident when they'd severed Clyde from their lives they'd all been rather protective of the teen, and she never seemed to miss a beat to when there was something going wrong. Swallowing her sudden fear she pressed on. "Why?"
"It's just that he hasn't been home, it's gone midnight, I thought I'd get a text from him if he was staying at yours or with Rani," the voice started to sound rushed and choked with tears.
Sarah was already getting up and slipping her feet into her slippers, reaching over she grabbed her mobile of its place on the nightstand and thumbed a quick text to Rani. Clyde's missing. Need Help. "Calm down Carla," she soothed, shuffling quickly over to her wardrobe she pulled out some clothes, wincing as she heard sniffling from the desperate mother on the other end.
"I wouldn't be so worried, it's just that I don't want him to go missing. I don't want…" she trailed off and let out a dry sob. At this point Sarah was already pulling on her clothes.
"I'll get Sky over to the Chandra's and then get over to yours,"
"Sarah-Jane you don't need to-"
"Nonsense," Sarah was hopping around the room trying to get her right leg into her trousers, the phone balanced between her shoulder and her ear. "I'll be there in less than fifteen. Clyde feels like part of my own family, and I feel the need to help him as much as you,"
The trousers slipped on perfectly and Sarah grinned in triumph. "I'll get round yours as soon as I wake up Sky and we can get a plan out to look for him,"
"SKY!" the young twelve-year-old girl almost leapt out her bed in fright as her frantic mother burst through the door, her hair in disarray, and she swore that her shirt was on backwards.
"Mum?" she looked at her, cocking her head to the side. "Is everything alright?"
"No, not really," she paused for breath. "Not at all," Sky frowned, that generally meant that something was really, really wrong. "Get up and get your dressing gown, you're going to the Chandra's,"
"Why?" the bleary eyed girl asked, part of her wanted to be alert for any danger, but the other part of her just wanted to go back to bed and curl under her warm covers.
"Because it's illegal if I leave you on your own,"
Sky frowned, "Why are you going to leave?" she pulled herself (with much effort on her part) out of her bed and started to look for her gown, surprised as her mother already had it in her hands and had started to usher her out of the door.
"Stop asking questions and let's move!" her mother never really sounded this stressed, and it made Sky worry.
Sky didn't like worrying.
They were on the first floor landing when they heard a desperate knock on the door, it was more like several loud bangs. Sky jumped, and hid slightly behind her mum, but Sarah was down the stairs in a flash, unlocking the door in record timing. The young brown haired girl was surprised to see her best friend Rani, dressed in a pair of slacks and a t-shirt she'd obviously just thrown on, and every out of breath. "Where's Clyde?" her voice was weary, like she didn't want to know the truth of where her good friend had gone.
"I don't know," her mother replied, "I've just got off the phone from Carla, she's sounded so upset,"
"Last time I saw him was when he left home at around eight," Rani ran a hand through her long dark hair, worry flashing through her eyes. "I haven't had a text off him since, and he normally texts his mum if he's gonna be home late." Sarah saw the lights at 14 Bannerman road flicker on, and the disgruntled form of Haresh Chandra opening the door, dressed in only his pyjama's and a gown. Even in this situation Sky giggled at the sight of her headmaster in his nightwear. "I've texted Luke and Clyde's not at Oxford,"
"Why would Clyde be at Oxford?" Sky asked.
"Sometimes people want a little time to themselves,"
"You think that's why Clyde's gone AWOL?" Rani bit her lip, "Cause of what happened when he was cursed?"
"Maybe, I haven't been able to talk about it with him, he just goes quiet," she paused, and saw the concern on Rani's face. "You too?"
"Yeah, even a promise of bowling and pizza didn't move him,"
"So you asked him out on a date?" piped up Sky, not wanting to be forgotten.
Not even Rani could stop the blush rising through her cheeks.
"Who's asking who for a date?" Haresh had made his way across the road, and stood with his arms crossed, not to pleased about the late – or early – wakening.
Sarah cut across her daughter, just before she could dig her young friend into any more trouble with her father. "Clyde's been missing, I've just got a phone call from his mum, I was going over to Carla's to comfort her and get a game plan rolling. Any chance you could babysit Sky?"
"I'm not a baby!" came Sky's indigent reply, her arms crossed and a pout across her face.
Haresh couldn't help but smile at the sight before him, even though the situation seemed that it was no laughing matter. "Yes, but you're underage meaning we can't leave you by yourself,"
Rani's phone suddenly buzzed, she whipped it out of her pocket, hoping it was Clyde, but her face fell as she realised it was only Luke. "Luke says he's coming down to help look for him,"
Sarah sighed and rubbed her temples tiredly. "Alright, tell him to-"
"I know where he is!" the exclamation took everybody in the group to surprise. The dark haired girl almost grinned to herself. She started making her way out of the drive.
"Rani!" her father was none to pleased with her sudden urge to walk out on them. "You can't go out like this!"
"Look I know where Clyde is, and I know I'm the only one that can get through to him!"
"Rani! Be reasonable!"
"Dad just let me do this!" she had reached the pavement. "We've got unresolved issues!"
Brilliant it'd just started to rain. A dark skinned boy sat with his legs pressed to his chest under a small, one-person veranda in his local park. He watched as the rain started to bounce off the pavement in little balls, as it got heavier. The orange light of the streetlamps was reflected through the rain, forming little football shaped orbs that hung, giving an eerie glow to the surrounding park. Water started to run off over the edges of the veranda, creating an artificial waterfall, giving a blurry perspective to everything around him.
The teen felt safe in his little watertight cocoon. He'd not been sleeping well, and thought it better to wander the streets alone then getting himself tired about worrying that he wasn't getting enough sleep. He shivered slightly and pulled his coat further around him. The abrasiveness between the strong friendship of him and Rani had started to ware away again and they were getting back to how they'd been before. The whole Mr and Mrs Sharp thing had helped them get back to normal, but there was still some problem with them he couldn't quite place. The thought it might be because Rani had been jealous of Ellie, but then why would Rani be jealous of what had happened between him and the blond girl. Was it because they'd bonded so quickly, in a matter of two days, when it'd taken Rani and him about a month to bond as close as they did? He didn't know, and from his point of view Rani had nothing to be jealous of Ellie, she had everything, warm bed, parents that loved her, friends that loved her.
So what was the problem?
He sighed and buried his head into his hands. All he could think about at the moment was either Rani or Ellie, but it was mostly Rani, but when he thought of Rani he thought of Ellie and massive guilt pressed down on his shoulders. He let out a frustrated grown and through the nearest object that he had to hand.
Turned out to be a rather large stone. It flew through the air, before skipping across the pavement to bury itself in the grass. Resting his head on the cool metal of the veranda he let himself think, closing his eyes he listened to the constant pounding of the rain on the metal roof and tried to catch a rhythm.
Ah, inner peace. Finally.
We do not wash our pits in the pool of tranquillity. He grinned at the reference.
Suddenly there was a yell. "Clyde!" a very recognisable yell.
He jumped and smacked his head on the bump of the veranda's support that was supposed to give some sort of artistic flare. Damn artistic flare. Groaning he rubbed the sore spot with his hand.
"Rani?" he sat up, confusion in his eyes as she came towards him.
"Everyone's worried sick Clyde!" her voice sounded tight, like she didn't know if she should cry or be angry with him. "What the hell were you thinking?"
Clyde was dumbstruck, she was never this angry with anything.
"You can't just go AWOL like that without anybody knowing!" she was standing in the rain, at nearly one in the morning, berating the idiot that she loved (only Clyde didn't know about the love part - yet). "Your mum rang Sarah-Jane in tears cause she didn't know where you'd gone! And neither did I!" he saw her bite her lip, and swallow.
For reasons he didn't know, and that he'd never be able to work out in his later years, he suddenly got angry, very, very, very, angry. "And where were you?" he bit out, scrambling up from his reasonably comfy position on the floor. "Where were you when I was alone huh? You didn't give a SHIT that I'd gone!" he stepped out from his little personal space bubble under the veranda, anger boiling through his veins. "Last thing that I remember, that you said, with any type of emotion at all, was that you HATED ME!" the last bit came out as a shout. "There's that little bit inside of you that wants me gone, and I don't know why!"
"What?" her voice sounded shocked, and neither seemed to care that they were getting soaked to the skin as the stood there yelling at each other out in the rain. "What Clyde that's ridiculous! I never would want you gone!"
"Well I'm gonna get goin' now!" he bellowed, finally allowing his confused rage out into the open. "And I don't know what time I'll be back, so you can stop worryin'!" He turned on his heels and started off in the opposite direction.
But he knew that Rani would follow him. He broke into a run, adrenalin teasing every part of his body; he pushed himself, out through the park and down the street, before coming to a t-junction in the middle of the road. Water splashed around his feet, drenching his trainers and filling the inside of his socks. "You know," he called. "I could turn here and never go back!"
"Like you have the nerve!" he was impressed that Rani had followed him all the way out here. Did she know how beautiful she looked with the rain pouring down around her and soaking into her skin?
"Just tell me!" he yelled. "Just tell me what would you miss if I was gone?" he had turned now, and was facing her, ready to walk backwards into the road. Man - his adrenalin was pumping now.
He felt like he could just get up and leave, without ever looking back.
"You!" he couldn't say if it was a gasp or a shout. "All of you!" she paused for breath and he looked at her, before turning and starting across the deserted road. "US!" it came as a desperate shout, forcing its way out of her lips as a sob. He stopped then, the sensible part of his mind gasping for breath as it pushed itself through the controlling anger and guilt that swamped the rest of his mind, and something clicked.
Clyde didn't have time to think as the car came screeching around the corner.
The next thing he knew- everything went black.
"Clyde!" Rani screamed desperately, it was a split second decision that saved the boys life. She pelted into the middle of the road and threw herself and Clyde out of the way. Some how it actually worked, she didn't know how, but maybe the universe was working in their favour for once. The two of them slammed into the pavement on the other side and rolled over onto the curb. The dark haired girl winced as she felt blood on both her knees and the jarring sensation through her hands. "Clyde?" she shook him lightly, the car itself had come to a screeching halt and had swerved on the wet road, but she'd heard no crash so she presumed that it and the driver was all right. "Clyde?" she shook him again, moving off him so she wasn't laid across the teen. Brushing her wet her out of her face she got a good look at him in the darkened street, the pale orange street light illuminated a graze across his face, she felt round the back of his head for bumps, there was a substantial one, but other than that there was no bleeding.
Man the universe was smiling at them this morning.
"Clyde wake up!" she slapped him, none to lightly across the face, wondering if it had been better to let the car hit him instead.
There was a groan from underneath her on the glossy wet pavement.
Clyde moaned as he felt pain across his ribs and at the back of his head – he was sure he was going to get concussion later on. What had happened? He'd blacked out for a second, and why was he sprawled out on the pavement? Before he even knew what was happening he felt a pair of hands grabbing the lapels of his jacket.
"You absolute FUCK!" the voice yelled. Wait was that Rani? "What the hell were you thinking?"
"Huh?" he groaned his head felt funny and his insides felt mangled.
"Running out into the middle of the road?"
His mouth managed to find words just then. "There were no cars!"
"Does that look like there were no cars to you?" she forced his head to look at the car that had almost hit him, and he suddenly felt very stupid and very sick. Without even giving Rani a moment's notice he pushed her off him and threw up all over the pavement. I could have just died! The thought shook him to his core. Standing up shakily he managed to find the nearest wall to lean on. Like him and everything around him it was wet, probably because of the rain.
She scrambled up after him, and then he noticed the blood shining dark on her knees, and her hands. Her hair was wet and matted, and her face was streaked with tears. He swallowed, and looked at her in the half-light, drenched by the rain, the dark congealing blood clotting on her hands and feet, illuminated by the soft glow of the streetlights. The picture would have been beautiful, if it had been in a different situation. Using rainwater to wash the bitter taste of bile out of his mouth he spat it out on the ground and smiled at her weakly.
"Thank you, that's all you can say?" she was up next to him now, gripping the lapels of his jacket again, the blood was not yet dried on her hands and was seeping through the lapels of his jacket. "After everything?" they looked at each other, eyes meeting properly for the first time. "It felt like someone had died Clyde!" he could see tears stinging the edges of her eyes. "It felt like someone had died, something huge in my life was missing and I couldn't figure out what it was. There was just this gaping hole in my chest and I couldn't place it. Sarah felt that way too," she took in a shaky breath and it was then he realised that there were tears mingling with the rain that was running down her face. Before he realised what he was doing he gently wiped away the tears drying on her cheeks.
"Heh, it's supposed to be romantic, isn't it? Two people in the rain at one in the morning… isn't that what Bridget Jone's taught us?"
She smiled at him weakly, and there was a choked laugh. "After everything that's happened, you," she swallowed, "That's all you can come up with?"
He grinned back slightly. "Hey, I'm a guy," and shrugged.
"I want things back the way they were Clyde," she ducked her head, seemingly in embarrassment. "Between us," she was looking down; her grip had relaxed slightly on his coat. "Recently it's been so awkward between us, I don't really know what to do anymore," Clyde blinked surprised at the confession. "I don't know, I think it's just me being stupid,"
Without thinking – Rani sometimes did that to him – he cupped her face gently and pressed his forehead to hers, breathing her in, absorbing her; forgetting everything else around them – the car, the pounding rain and the cold. Her eyes met his and they were once again lost in a little space-time bubble thingy that saw them as being the only things in the world. "I don't know about you Rani, but there is one thing that you are definitely not. And that's stupid," she smiled at him, and he grinned roguishly back. "I think I'm the one that's been stupid, I think I've been blind as well," he let his thumb stroke the side of her face, and was surprised when she leaned into his touch. "I'm not good with emotions – you of all people should know that – and I've been think figuring this one out, but I still don't know," he was rambling. "I don't know how to say this, but its been buggin' me. There's know reason for you to be jealous of what happened between me and Ellie, you have everythin'. I was thinkin' more abou' emotionally rather than materialistically," she gave him a confused look, but still let him carry on. "I'm not tryin' to make you feel guilty, cause I know I already am, but," he swallowed, and a voice in the back of his mind yelled get on with it man! "You've got family that love you, and you've got friends that love you, and that's the only thing that anybody ever needs," he pressed a subtle kiss against her forehead, in the way that his own mother did when she was proud of him, or trying to comfort him, and then leaned against her. Part of him was just terrified that she'd reject him, or just take when he'd opened his heart to her on the shoulder.
"Clyde," her deep woody brown eyes danced with an emotion that he couldn't quite place. "I-"
There was a sudden yell, and footsteps were heard splashing against the pavement. A man in his mid twenties came sprinting across the road. "You kids alright?" they both realised that he must be the driver, and their little bubble had been broken. "Christ you came out of bloody nowhere! At least your girl was there to get you outa trouble," it was almost automatic the way the two of them stepped apart with awkward looks on their faces. He glanced at them both. "Look I'm sorry man, I just haven't the money if you sue,"
Clyde's head was mangled, and for a second he was dumbfounded, before he found his voice. "Nah mate, don't worry."
"You guys sure you don't want a lift back?" the man was getting back into his car- probably to avoid the rain.
"We're cool thanks!" Rani replied, waving slightly as the man kicked his engine into gear before they heard him drive off.
Suddenly Clyde felt a short sharp sting of flesh on flesh across his cheek. He blinked in surprise. "What the hell was that for?"
"Don't ever do that to me again Clyde Langer, or I swear it'll be a lot worse,"
He couldn't help but grin, "Really?" he winced as she punched him on the shoulder, and she blushed as he leaned forwards so their lips were brushing. "You know," he whispered. "I could change your mind so you'd never want to leave me again,"
"Really?" she returned his smirk, but inside her heart was beating hard and fast in her chest. It amazed her how this one person could have this effect on the whole of her body. She let him initiate the kiss, sighing as his gentle lips pressed against hers, caressing them softly. They ended back up against the wet wall, the water sinking into their clothes, and the brick digging into Clyde's skin. Rani pulled him in tighter, unknowling hooking her leg over his hip and looping her arms around his neck. He tasted of rainwater, musk, and something that was just Clyde. She sighed against his lips as his tongue made it's probing entry. She smiled as his hands slipped to her hips, cold fingers brushing the damp skin and pulling her against him. Her own hands trailed from his shoulders and where they were wrapped around his neck, went to cradling and brushing across his face.
They pulled back, their faces just inches apart and foreheads pressing softly against each other's. The boy drew in a shaky breath, his dark coal brown eyes finding her soft brown rowan ones.
"Rani," he swallowed, "Rani I-"
Suddenly there was the sound of a vibrating phone, and Clyde swore, pulling back slightly from the intiment embrace that they'd just shared, wondering what dick had decided to destroy their little bubble. Sighing in defeat Rani decided that it would be best to answer the call. Pulling the mobile out of her damp trouser pocket she pressed it to her ear.
"Hi dad," she almost groaned, and Clyde was surprised that she leaned against him, sighing happily as his arms automatically wrapped around her. "Yeah we're okay... Yes it's a WE, Clyde was stupid enough to nearly get himself killed, but luckily..." he pulled her a little tighter. "We're alright," there was a pause. "WE'VE BEEN OUT FOR HOW LONG?" her voice sounded shocked and surprised. She pulled the device away from her ear. "We've been out for nearly two hours," in reply Clyde winced, realising how worried his mother must be.
"Tell him that we're coming back now,"
About forty-five minutes later there was a rapid knock on the door, Luke was the first up, to go and answer. The Chandra's living room had been filled with nervous family wondering when they were going to get back. Gita and Carla quickly followed the teen, Sky was curled against her mother, yawning and stretching as the doorbell's ringing tone woke her from her light sleep.
Luke pulled open the door, surprised to see his two best friends in such a state. Rani's hair was wet and matted, whilst both of their clothes were so wet that they were sticking to their skin. Clyde's arm was around the girls neck and he was resting heavily on his left leg, his right foot balanced off the ground and looking quite sore. "What the hell happened?" He beat the two parents with his question, catching site of the congealing blood on Rani's knees, soaked up by the soggy wet clothing.
"Clyde was being a dick," Rani replied offhandedly, like itdidn't really matter any more. With Luke's help she got Clyde through the door and handed Clyde's weight over to Luke who easily took the other boy around his shoulder and watched as the girl winced, rolling her shoulder to ease out the stiff muscle.
"Clyde!" his mother embraced him in a hug, the darker skinned boy let out a embarrassed groan as he was smothered by his mother. Knowing he was okay Rani kicked off her ruined shoes and squelched into the kitchen.
"Don't even think about it Rani!" her mother scolded lightly. "Shower,"
"No but's young lady," without saying anything the elder woman hugged her daughter tightly. "I presume you turned him?" she murmered.
"Hmm," Rani suddenly felt exhuasted, leaning into to her mother, who lightly stroked her hair.
"You're tired my love, come on, upstairs with you,"
Over his mothers shoulder he saw Gita take Rani upstairs, his mother was still hugging him -painfully - and embarrassingly tight. "Mum!" he wriggled, glowering at his best guy friend as he snickered over her shoulder. "Mum I'm okay!"
"Don't you lie to me Clyde Langer," she pulled him out of her arms and cupped his cheek gently. "Don't you EVER do that to me again- I don't want to keep you under lock and key but going off like that is ridiculous!"
"I'm sorry mum," he gave in and hugged her back tightly.
"Tell me where you're going next time all right?"
She cupped his face in her hands gently. "Promise me Clyde - there's a lot of people who love you and you don't realise that,"
"Heh, have you been talking to Rani lately?" His mother raised her eyebrow in question. He grinned slightly and winced as he put pressure on his injured ankle. Carla noticed his discomfort, and her questioning was immediate replaced with concern.
"Clyde are you hurt?"
"Nah I'm fine, it's just a twisted ankle,"
He was just about to explain everything to his mum but Sky had interrupted them by running in and throwing her arms around him. Surprised Clyde had no choice but to hug her back. "Woah there Sky!" he smiled - although slightly confused.
"Don't run off again," the young girl murmured, face in his chest. The darker skinned boy awkwardly patted her back. He glanced to his mum who mouthed I told you so. "I thought it was the curse all over,"
His mother gave him a questioning look, as he patted Sky's head. "Nah, no one's cursed Sparky,"
She pushed him playfully, "Don't call me Sparky," she paused, and grabbed a fist full of his shirt, then wringing it out between her hands. "Man you're soaking Clyde,"
"That's what happens when you spend time in the rain," he tapped her head gently. "Nope, I thought you had more brains than that," she scowled at him in reply.
"Take this Clyde," his head teachers response was to fling a hand towel in the boys direction, who took it greatfully.
"How on earth did you get so wet?" his mother pondered as she removed his dripping jacket from around his shoulders.
"Maybe they were doing more than just talking," came Luke's chuckling voice from the kitchen, Clyde was met by a glower from Haresh, a raised eyebrow from his mother and a knowing smile from Sarah-Jane. It wasn't that odd that the latter knew more about Clyde and Rani's relationship dynamic then the two parents - and she knew, at present - that it was strained at best.
"What would Clyde and Rani be doing in the rain if they weren't talking?" Sky's voice piped up, she'd taken the jacket from Carla and was wringing it out on the front door.
"Yes we'd all like to know Clyde," Haresh had his arms crossed over his chest, and was giving Clyde such a hard stare that Clyde was sure he was able to read his mind.
"Well," he pulled the towel down his face, his ears turning slightly pink at the thought of what he and Rani had been doing out in the rain - apart from the near death experience, the sick and the large bump on the back of his head - it had been quite romantic.
"Come on, lets get you home before you catch your death of cold," Carla squeezed her sons shoulder gently breaking the awkward atmosphere, and preventing the man of the house from almost murdering her son.
"Clyde can stay at mine," Luke offered, "And borrow some spare clothes, I've got a lecture in the afternoon and I can cancel rowing - the team captain's not bad,"
Carla smiled gratefully at the kindness of her son's best friend. She always wondered if her son would have turned out any differently if he'd never met the friends that he now knew as family.
"Come on then," Sarah prompted, "Lets get you over to mine, and get those clothes in the wash,"
The young man grinned thankfully and was about to step out into the night, but forgot about his swollen ankle. He let out a surprised yelp and almost toppled over, but Haresh caught him easily by the arm, leaving him carefully balanced between the wall and his head teacher.
"Thanks sir," he winced, rubbing the top of his leg. "Forgot about that,"
Rolling his eyes at the boy Haresh helped him to his front door, passing him over to Luke who was standing outside waiting to help Clyde across the road. With his best friends help and his mother and Sarah following across the road (Sky in tow) the five made it across to 13 Bannerman Road, and into the warm.
The light of Luke's clock read 03:45, they glowered him from the bedside table in his best friends room. The boy in question was fast asleep, he always slept facing towards the door, his arms tucked into his body, and legs curled up into a little cocoon, light snores emitted from the mass of blankets. Sighing the occupant of the camping bed next to him, rolled over - for what seemed like the hundredth time that night - desperately trying to force his eyes closed and get some sleep. He groaned silently, rolling over and burying his head into the pillow. He pulled the blankets over his head and glowered up at the dark, desperately trying to get some sleep. He was surprisingly cold, and brought himself up into a little ball, tucking the sheets around him into a little ball.
Why couldn't he sleep?
Then something hit him - he missed Rani. Which was odd, he normally slept fine without Rani. Then why was he missing her now? Part of him, deep inside, wanted to sneak over to the other side of the road, creep into her room and snuggle next to her in her bed... he paused, actually that just sounded really creepy.
The bed felt too big. He let out a frustrated whine mentally scolding his sudden realisation.
"Just go to her Clyde," the darker skinned boy jumped and rolled over, pulling the blankets from over his head, so he was able to see his weary looking best friend.
"I didn't say and of that out loud, did I mate?"
The other teen blinked owlishly. "Huh?"
Sighing in relief Clyde collapsed back into the bed, feeling completely and utterly drained of energy, but not being able to get to sleep.
"Just go over the road Clyde," his best friend ordered, re-fluffing his pillow and snuggling himself into it. The sides of Clyde's mouth quirked, when Luke was going to bed he always made this little ritual of fluffing his pillow and getting into the right position before he could go to sleep. "What?"
"Nothin'" Clyde replied automatically. Taking his friends advice he pulled off the blankets and slipped on some slippers, wincing as his ankle protested the moment. Slipping on the spare dressing gown Clyde pulled himself upwards, he made it - with surprising ease - to the door of his friends room and turned. "If I don't make it back Haresh has probably killed me - and no you can't have my CD collection,"
Chuckling Luke shook his head, "You're taste in musics pants anyway, I'd much rather have Rani's,"
"Hey!" the teen huffed, and then shrugged. "Each to his own, I've always wondered why they didn't make you a girl - would have suited you-" he gave a minute yelp as Luke chucked a pillow at his head.
"Go and do whatever you're planning do with Rani; and I don't want the X rated version," he trailed off and pulled his covers around him, tucking his feet into the end of the blankets to keep in the warmth.
Clyde grinned. "Who are you and what have you done with my best friend?"
"University does strange things to you're head," the other teen explained. "Now go, before I have to drag you over the road, I've got a lecture in ten hours and I want to be able to stay awake through it,"
Sneaking out of the house the teen grabbed the set of keys by the front door - ever since they'd faced world domination several times they'd all exchanged house keys to be able to contact each other even in a emergancy - but it was pretty cool to have the key's to his head teachers house. As quickly as he could, with his bad ankle, he made it across the road and, as quiet as a cat, he made it into the house. Getting up the stairs two at a time he hesitated as he reached Rani's door. He bit his lip, suddenly thinking that this was a really, really, stupid thing to do.
Suddenly the door opened and there was a quiet gasp of surprise, before he was quickly pulled into the girls room the door shutting quickly and softly behind them. "Clyde what are you doing here? I thought I heard someone downstairs and I was going to go and wake Dad," she paused, giving him a look. "How did you get in?"
Sheepishly Clyde held up his set of keys that he'd stuffed into his dressing gown pocket. "Clyde you know you're only supposed to use those in emergencies,"
"Well..." he trailed off, and returned the key's to his pocket. "I knew it was stupid to come here," he groaned, realising how stupid he must look. Standing in his crushes room when it was morning and still dark. He turned and was about to leave, but was stopped as Rani put a gentle hand on his arm.
"Why did you come here Clyde?" she asked gently, he pulled out from her grip turning away and crossing his arms over his chest, and ducking his head in shame. He hated it when his cool façade broke, he hated looking vulnerable instead of his brave and strong persona gave out, and he hated it especially when it broke in front of Rani, as he felt like he could no longer protect her.
"Because I couldn't sleep," he replied lamely, "I couldn't sleep and the bed felt empty, fuckin' empty, which is weird cause I never have anyone in it apart from me - and I felt like I was missing somethin', somethin' important and I think I put my finger on it," Rani put a soft hand on his arm.
"Clyde," she whispered.
"I'm sick of bein' alone Rani," he murmured in reply, turning so he was facing her.
"You're not alone," she hugged him tightly. "You'll never be alone," she whispered fiercely.
"Never say never ever, you'll jinx it," they stayed like that for what felt like hours, but it was only a few seconds. Neither wanted to break out of the intimate embrace, and neither wanted to admit that they didn't want to.
"Rani," Clyde was the one to break the silence, the girl looked at him, her eyes reflecting the soft pink glow of her fairy lights that were strung up against the bed. "Y'know when we were outside," she nodded, her face in a tender expresion. "Well I was gonna say somethin', and it was real important," he paused, gathering his courage. "Rani I-"
Something inside Rani swelled, she felt light and giddy, like she was walking on thin air - or had just inhaled helium - - but she was floating somewhere near cloud nine, warm, happy and fluffy. She cut him off with a tender kiss against his lips. She broke away quickly. "Yeah Clyde, I do too," her voice tender and soft.
A unknown feeling crashed through Clyde veins and arteries, roaring like a golden sea. A great weight had been lifted off his shoulders. Rani loved him! A grin split his face in two, as he realised that the feelings of confusion and angst that he'd been feeling in his life was the emotion that was love trying to make itself known to him - and man it really had just made itself known to him.
Rani Chandra loved him, and he loved her. A great weight was lifted from his shoulders, as he realised that his love was not unrequited.
At 04:45am on Saturday morning in late November Clyde Langer realised who he wanted to spend the rest of his life with.
Without being able to stop himself he pulled her towards him and passionately kissed her, it was a tender, loving and understanding kiss, a promise of what was to come and a promise to forget the bad parts of their past. He buried one hand into her hair and the other one gripped lightly onto her hip. Rani looped her arms around his neck and happily kissed him back. Reluctantly they came up for air, foreheads pressing against each other, and either eyes glowing happily. Clyde gently brushed a strand of hair back from her face and tucked it behind her ear, resting his hand against her cheek, and her arms slipped down to hug him loosely around his waist.
They both smiled at each other, realisation hitting them at the exact same moment. Clyde suddenly felt exhausted.
As if Rani could read his mind she broke the silence. "I don't know about you but I'm exhaused,"
"Ditto," Clyde replied still smiling. "I should probably be getting back,"
"Hmmm" Rani almost purred as he gently stroked the skin on her hip. "Or you could stay," she offered, face pressed against his neck.
"I was kinda hopin' you'd ask," he responded cheekily, pressing a quick kiss against her ear.
With some reluctance she pulled out of the hug, knowing that they'd both have to get to bed otherwise they'd both be pulling a all-nighter. "You know, you are staying aren't you?" he glanced at her blankly, and her eyes flicked from him to the bed and back again.
"Oh," he shuffled on his feet. She rolled her eyes and turned to the computer, to hide her evident blush, and Clyde noticed the pages of stagnant text on the electronic screen.
"I didn't realise you wrote,"
"Yeah I write when I can't sleep, it keeps my mind at ease,"
Getting the hint Clyde sat on the bed, but not before throwing off his dressing gown, watching as it landed neatly on the chest of draws. Rani bent slightly so she could turn off her monitor and harddrive (Clyde being Clyde just couldn't resist a peek). "Y'know if you stayed there I bet I could sleep very easily," he grinned, and couldn't help but laugh as Rani threw a very well aimed mouse mat at him. He caught it easily and tossed it next to his dressing-gown. Tiredness washed over him and he collapsed onto the bed with a whoomp. He watched casually as Rani slipped off her dressing-gown and hung it over the back of the chair. "Nice PJ's," he giggled softly, shaking his head at the blue Snoopy t-shirt and trouser set that Rani was wearing, refraining from rolling her eyes at his childishness she pertched herself on the bed next to him, leaning over and picking up her phone from the bedside table.
"Whatch'u doin'?" he asked in interest as he pushed himself up into the corner that was formed by the two joining walls that her bed was nestled into.
"Setting a alarm for tomorrow - well today," she paused as she entered the time on the keypad and set the alarm. "You wouldn't want Dad walking in on us - would you?"
Clyde winced at the thought. "I'd rather be chased by a Judoon for bein' off planet - that planet bein' in crisis cause the Doctor had arrived," "
She laughed softly, before falling into the bed next to him and letting out a soft sigh. "That can be arranged," she smiled at him and he smiled back at her lightly in return.
They stayed like that for a while, just enjoying each other's company, before Clyde once again broke the silence. "So," he paused, bringing the awkward question that was on both their minds into the open and to their ears. "How we gonna do this?"
"Mmmm," Rani hesitated in reply, and she felt Clyde's unease.
"I mean I can just go across the road back to Luke's," he prompted, hoping that was not what she wanted, he gave her a uneasy smile. He didn't really want to move - he was quite comfortable.
"Of course I want you here you idiot," she leant up and kissed him, the position was awkward, but Clyde relaxed into it, bringing his hand to cup her face and stroked her cheek. He slipped down so he was resting next to her, their lips gently pressed together and their forehead against each others. They broke the kiss and Rani snuggled into him, reaching over and turning off the quaint fairy lights that had given the room a soft glow rose glow. As they were plunged into darkness Clyde felt Rani rest her head against his chest. The unusual weight of her head against his chest felt odd, but it was a good odd, it made him feel warm and protected -but he wasn't going to tell anyone about that in the short term. He wanted to get his mind to stop running, and slow down, just to enjoy the moment. He felt one of Rani's hands move up to his chest and rest next to her cheek, and remembered the grazes she received in saving his life earlier in the night. Tenderly he took her hand, and gently pressed a kiss to the scabbed grazes on her palm. "Clyde," she whispered. He removed her hand from his lips and placed it back onto his chest. "Clyde thank-you,"
"For what?" he replied softly, finding that it was comfortable for them both when he had his hand resting on her back and the other round her waist.
"Just," she paused, and pressed her face into his pyjama's. "Just not giving up,"
He swallowed. "I tried, and I will continue to try, cause I've got somethin' to come home to - if you catch my drift," he felt her smile against his chest as he played with her hair. They were comfortable, just with their silence, after a few minutes of lying together, Clyde pressed the question. "Hey Rani you wanna catch a movie and dinner?"
"Yeah," she paused, "We'd have to make sure that-"
He cut her off, "No, just us two, y'know make it official," he could just about make out smile in the dimness in her room. He felt a quick kiss being pressed to his chest and Rani nuzzled his neck.
"Yeah, I'd like that a lot," they settled down for the night, as Rani pulled the duvet up against them, so they were wrapped up a cocoon of each other and the blankets.
It was then Clyde realised that it hadn't been his bed that had been empty, it had been his heart and now the gap had been filled, and it had been filled by one Rani Chandra. That was cool, he reasoned as he finally drifted off to sleep, he could dream easy on that conclusion.
Hope you enjoyed it, I definately enjoyed writing it - although I think that the characters can get a little OCC at some points!
See you guys after Mid Febuaray with hopeuflly some more content.
I really must be getting to bed now as it's 01:45am English time and I'm struggling to keep my eyes open!
P.S I'm looking for a beta to help me with Too Much. If you'd like to help me I'm willing to accept, but I would like a experienced beta who's good with spelling and grammar.
Thanks and have a good year.