[This is the story of a girl and a boy who couldn't figure out how to fly]
"A frying pan?"
"For the last bloody time mate, yes, a frying pan!"
Hoagie let out a whistle as he leaned back in his favorite chair, the football game blaring from the television long forgotten.
"I can't believe she threw a frying pan at you." mused Hoagie as he held back his laughter. Beside him, Wally huffed in annoyance.
"She's bloody crazy!" cried the Australian, throwing his hands in the air.
"So what'd you do this time?" asked Hoagie curiously. Wally had always had a talent of pushing Kuki's buttons, and he had been on the receiving end of objects thrown by the petite oriental countless times, but never one so heavy as a frying pan. Whatever he'd done must've been good.
"How the hell would I know?" said Wally. "It seems like she's always mad at me these days. I can never keep track of what it is I'm supposed to have done!"
"C'mon Wally." said Hoagie. "Kuki wouldn't throw a frying pan at you unless she had a good reason. Spit it out."
"I didn't do anything!" insisted Wally. "For the past couple weeks she's just been moody all the time. Anything I do can set her off! Like last week, she asked me to take out the trash, and I said I would, but...umm... there was a really good wrestling match on, and I sort of...um... forgot to take out the trash, and she got pissed. She just yelled at me, and then she threw a book at me, and then she slumped over and started sobbing. How am I supposed to deal with that?"
"Maybe moving in together wasn't the greatest idea." suggested Hoagie. "I mean, maybe you two are just getting on each others nerves."
"You and Abby live together." grumbled Wally. "And you're getting along just fine."
"Well, yeah." said Hoagie as he sipped his soda. "But we're...us and you guys are...you.
"Brilliant analysis." grumbled Wally.
"Wow." teased Hoagie. "College must be doing you some good. Both those words were longer then a syllable."
"Screw you." grumbled Wally as he reached into his pocket and grabbed a pack of cigarettes. Hoagie reached out and snagged the pack.
"Nu-uh." said Hoagie firmly as he tossed the pack into the trash. "Y'know Abby's rule."
"Whipped." said Wally. "That's what you are. Bloody whipped."
"I'm not the one having girl problems." said Hoagie pointedly. "And if anything, you're more whipped then I am. I mean, you're the one who's already bought the ring."
Wally reached into his pocket, fingering the silver band he had picked out two months ago. Abby had rolled her eyes when she had heard he was still carrying the damn thing in his pocket, but Hoagie told her to cut him some slack. After all, it had taken him eight years to ask the girl out; there was no reason to think proposing would be any different.
"Doesn't mean I'm going to do anything with the ring." scowled Wally. "Especially after that frying pan incident. Honestly, how stupid would I be to ask the girl who threw a fucking frying pan at me if she wants to get married?"
"Oh c'mon Wally." said Hoagie with a wave of his hand. "You two already act like an old married couple. Not much more to do but make it official."
"I don't even know if she wants it to be official."
"Which is why you ASK."
"And what if she says no?"
"Then at least you know." said Hoagie bluntly, turning his attention back to the television.
"That," grumbled Wally to himself. "has got to be the most unhelpful advice ever."
"Abby's gonna be home soon." said Hoagie as he drummed his fingers on the edge of his chair. "Maybe she'll know what's up with Kuki."
As if he had summoned her, the front door of the apartment swung open, revealing Abby with an extremely large grin spread across her face. She noticed Wally lounging on the couch and her smile got, if it was even possible, wider.
"Wally!" said Abby as she dumped her purse and jacket on a hook by the front door, kicking off her sensible black heels. "Abby was wondering where you were. Kuki's been looking all over for you. Said she needs to talk to you."
"I'm screwed, aren't I?" groaned Wally, as Abby burst into a bout of giggles.
"Hardly." said Abby as she plopped down on the arm of Hoagie's chair, her grin still threatening to break her face in half. "Although Abby would recommend you do somethin' about that ring you've been keeping in your pocket."
Wally mumbled something unintelligible under his breath.
"Didn't catch that." said Abby, her arm resting comfortably around Hoagie's shoulders.
"I can't believe you find this amusing." grumbled Wally. "Me and Kuki just got in the fight of the century, and you're sitting there laughing at me."
"You are acting very teenagery." agreed Hoagie, one brow raised slightly. "What's up?"
"Oh nothing." said Abby casually. Both boys raised their eyebrows simultaneously, two identical faces of disbelief staring at her. Abby rolled her eyes.
"Stop looking at Abby like that." said Abby sternly "You'll find out soon enough. Kuki's on her way over."
Wally's face drained of all color.
"Don't you dare." said Abby menacingly as Wally slumped back into his seat, looking longingly at the door.
"Aw, give the guy a break." said Hoagie absently, his eyes once again glued to the television screen. "Kuki threw a frying pan at him the last time she saw him. I don't blame him for being nervous."
"Don't worry." said Abby with a wave of her hand. "Abby promises not to let Kuki into the kitchen, okay? She's not gonna kill you Wally."
"How do you know?" groaned Wally. "I don't even know what I did!"
"You left your dirty dishes in the sink again." sighed Abby. Wally's mouth dropped open.
"She threw a frying pan at me because I left my dirty dishes in the sink?" asked Wally incredulously. "What the hell?"
"That's extreme." agreed Hoagie. "What's up with Kuki?"
"Nothingggggg." said Abby, dragging out the word teasingly.
"Abby," said Wally slowly, "Kuki is about to come in here and kill me. It's only fair that you tell me what the hell is going on."
Abby opened her mouth, a sharp rap on the door interrupting her before she could speak. She shut her mouth and gave Wally a mischievious grin.
"You'll find out soon enough." said Abby, lifting Hoagie into a standing position despite his protests. "Door's open!"
Wally gulped as Abby tugged Hoagie out of the room, leaving him alone.
The door creaked open, and Wally dug his nails into his palms to stop them from shaking.
The seconds ticked by, with no sign of Kuki. At last, her head peeked around the door, her eyes directed firmly at the ground. With a gentle push the door swung the rest of the way open, and Kuki shuffled into the room, twisting her fingers nervously.
"Uh..." said Kuki eventually, after the silence had become too awkward to bear. "Hi Wally."
Wally, too surprised that she hadn't attacked yet, could only manage a grunt in return.
"I know you're probably mad at me," said Kuki, still staring resolutely at the ground. "I mean, I threw a frying pan at you for cruds sake. And, um... I'm sorry."
"'S fine." mumbled Wally.
The silence descended over them once again, but this time neither of them tried to break it. Every once in a while Kuki would open her mouth, as if to say something, but every time she'd quickly shut it again, the silence still as prevalent as ever.
"Oh come on." Kuki and Wally both jumped as Hoagie's voice cut through the silence, followed by a stern "Hoagie!" from Abby. "Please, for the love of all things edible just talk to each other already!"
"Why are you eavesdropping on our conversation?" asked Kuki dangerously.
"First off," said Hoagie from behind the slightly ajar door. "I would hardly call this a conversation. Second off, it's not really eavesdropping, it's. . . it's. . . concerned listening."
"Bullshit." grunted Wally.
"Just tell him you're pregnant already!" Abby grumbled. She let out a gasp.
"Abby!" groaned Kuki. Wally's jaw dropped to the floor.
"Oh crud. Oh crud. Abby did not just say that."
"Wow." said Hoagie, shock evident in his voice. "Usually it's me or Wally who let stuff slip like that."
"Um..." came Abby's voice from behind the door, uncharacteristically nervous. "Abby and Hoagie are gonna...uh... go to the store. Yeah. Call Abby when you finish talking, okay Kuki? Bye Wally!"
The door flew open as Abby dragged Hoagie to the front door, stopping only to grab shoes for the two of them before exiting the apartment, letting the door slam behind them.
The clock continued to tick as Wally and Kuki, faces burning red, looked resolutely away from each other.
"So," said Wally, his voice cracking embarrassingly. He cleared his throat, his face growing even redder. "That's...uh...well, I mean it's..." He trailed off into silence.
"Go ahead," whispered Kuki, "say you're not happy. It's..." She too trailed off into silence.
"No," said Wally after a minute, head shaking slightly. "It's not that I'm not... well okay, maybe... I mean... well, I'm twenty-one and you're, y'know, not even legally allowed to drink... and you're... I guess... I dunno."
"Yeah," said Kuki, voice trembling slightly. "I guess you're right."
"I am?" asked Wally, he finally looked at her, but she still stared resolutely at the ground. "Oh. What exactly am I right about?"
"We're too young," sighed Kuki, twisting her fingers, "but, y'know, I'd hoped... but I mean... if you don't... then again, I... look, it's just that... y'know."
"Yeah," said Wally, although he most certainly did not know.
"For crying out loud."
Wally and Kuki jumped as Abby stormed into the room, Hoagie following behind at a slower pace.
"Abby cannot understand," said Abby, looking firmly at Wally and Kuki. "How this is getting you anywhere. Didn't you two ever learn to communicate?"
"This is how we communicate." grumbled Wally. Abby snorted.
"Look," she said. "This is how you're supposed to do it."
Abby moved over to stand by Kuki.
"Hi Wally," said Abby, intentionally raising her voice to a higher pitch. "Just wanted to tell you that I'm pregnant, and I know we're young, but I want to keep him or her anyway because I love you and our child."
Abby moved to stand next to Wally, her voice deepening.
"That's great, Kuki." said Abby, plunging a hand into Wally's pocket and pulling out the ring. "Wanna get married?"
Dropping the ring into Wally's surprised hand, Abby went to stand by Hoagie, who was doing his best to contain his laughter.
"And now," said Abby in her regular voice. "Kuki says yes, you both live happily ever after, and Abby can stop fretting over the two of you."
"You want to keep the baby?" asked Wally.
"You were gonna ask me to marry you?" said Kuki.
They stared at each other for a minute, the silence heavy. Abby groaned loudly and pushed Wally closer to Kuki.
"Yes, she wants the baby," grumbled Abby. She walked over to Kuki and tugged her closer to Wally. "Yes, he wants to get married. It's really not that complicated. Now hurry up and get this settled before Abby loses it!"
"You mean you haven't already?" mumbled Wally in mock surprise. Abby shot a glare his way.
"Just get it over with Wally," advised Hoagie, his grin threatening to break his face.
"Whatever," said Wally. He dropped to one knee, his face bright red. "Wanna get married?"
"Sure," said Kuki. She dropped to her knees as well and gently took the ring from Wally. "You wanna keep the baby?"
"Yeah," said Wally, a small grin breaking across his face.
"See?" asked Abby proudly. Wally and Kuki linked hands as they turned to face her. "That wasn't so hard, was it?"
[Because all they really needed was a push]