A/N: Okay, so here's the thing; I know I'm supposed to be studying now, and I know should be finishing my other running stories first, but I am just so thrilled to know what you think of this story! Personally, I really enjoyed writing even only this first chapter, and I completely know how to continue it but I want to know what you think of it! Otherwise, I have the feeling I'm talking to a wall.
No, this story is not originally mine. It's based on the book 'It started with a kiss' from Miranda Dickinson, which is quite the most AMAZING book I've ever read. I can certainly advice reading that book, it's so great!
But, because it's such a great book, I thought I'd write our own version of it with our favorite TV characters!
And I know that I kinda leave my usual path in writing by making this one a real POV story, in the 'I' kind of way, but I thought it just fitted the story, and since the book is that too, that was the only true reasoning behind it xD.
Disclaimer: Nothing is mine.
It started with a kiss
Based on the book 'It started with a kiss' from Miranda Dickinson
When it comes to friends, I can divide mine into two kind of groups: one group that I only know from my job as a Senior Special Agent at the CBI. I like these people, but our conversations don't go further than the topic 'Crime Fighting'. Not that I very much want our conversations to change. Professionalism, that was my personal tagline – or word.
The other group is small. Most people in that group are people I've met in college. It wasn't like I was unpopular then, I just behaved like a proper student. I didn't go out much, the times I did were restricted to birthdays or occasional parties classmates arranged. Most times I was stuck at home studying and looking after my little brothers.
Unfortunately for me, I have just lessened the last group with one person.
Judging from the way Walter looks at me from these beautiful hazel eyes, I know I've made the biggest mistake in my life.
Maybe he hasn't heard me. Happens more times with Walter. Maybe there's some money stuck in his ears from his dives into his money pool. Not that we don't grant it to him, he deserves it.
"I said I love you, Walter."
Walter swallowed, and blinked. "You're kidding me, aren't you?"
As my words sank in, I saw Walter's expression change from his distinctive Walter Mashburn smile to something I hadn't seen much in my life. I didn't like it one bit.
He swallowed once again, ran a hand through his short brown hair, and then focused on me again.
"How... How long..."
"A long time, actually."
Maybe I should have dressed in something more 'potential girlfriend material' instead of my usual attire, consisting of a plain T-shirt and comfortable blue jeans? I love this outfit, but I knew that Walter was more a man for Paris Hilton kind of girls. He wouldn't fancy me, but I could always try, right?
But seeing the horror in Walter's eyes, I knew it wouldn't have made any difference if I was sitting in front him, clad in a designer dress, decorated with real diamonds. He wouldn't like me, only as a friend, and I was internally killing myself in all the ways I've learned about on the police academy – without showing Walter, of course. But I knew he could see it in my eyes. I had never been good in lying and this time was not an exception.
This was the biggest mistake I've ever made in my life.
"But... Reese, we're... we're mates... Best friends?"
Dammit, Teresa Lisbon, you've ruined everything once again.
"Yes, of course we are. Look, just forget I said anything, okay?" I tried to focus back on my coffee, but saw Walter shaking his head frantically.
"No, no, Teresa. I... You said it now... Why did you say it? Why did you put it on me..." This would never be able to be repaired, not in a thousand years.
I had dreamed about this moment so many times since I noticed that I was in love with him: I would tell him I love him, and he would take me in his arms.
Oh Teresa, I've loved you forever too. I'm so glad you told it, now we can be together. If you hadn't said anything we wouldn't be able to.
"We're fine as we are, aren't we? I mean, if it's good then why change it, right?" He ran a hand through his hair again. "I can't believe you actually thought this would be a good idea."
Well, excuse me, but yes I did. Somewhere between my ridiculous, obviously deluded heart and my stupid big mouth, my brain got pushed out of the picture and I – freaking crazy ass that I am – found myself persuaded that I might be the answer to his dreams. Of course I'm not, how could I ever think that?
But I honestly thought that we were moving closer to that kind of friendship. Ever since college, he had been one of my best friends. The times we were together were always filled with loud jokes. I knew that Walter never much kept women in the 'friend' zone, he usually dragged them to his bed immediately. But he didn't with me. And I honestly had the idea that all the changed stares, the hugs that lingered just a second too long, that that meant something. Our shared friends thought so. Even my team at work – who didn't spend too much time with him – thought so. They all saw it – how come Walter didn't?
I quickly ran through my mind to come up with something to say. Other than 'I love you, Walter, kiss me now' and 'Teresa Lisbon, go to hell', I could only say:
Walter shook his head. "I... I did not see this coming. But this – this is just weird, Reese.."
"Thanks for the vote of confidence."
Walter stared at me, almost disgusted with what he'd just said. "Oh, no, Reese, I... I'm sorry, I didn't mean it like that... It's just... I... You've got to give me a moment to get my head around this."
I swallowed my embarrassment away, and looked around the crowded café. If I was a mentalist of some sort, I would be able to read their minds and would know if any of these people were suffering the same nightmare I was now. But I almost immediately knew that I was the only one capable of screwing up things like this. Forever Awkward Teresa Lisbon. Forever alone.
"The thing is, Teresa," Walter said, "you've always been just Reese – one of the guys, you know? You're someone I can laugh with, without any complications. But now..." Walter was digging an impossible hole for himself and he knew it. "I'm sorry, Reese. I'm really sorry. I'm really not sure how to deal with this."
That was it. I'd heard enough. I'd embarrassed myself enough in front of Walter.
I rose to my feet, feeling instantly nauseous as I did. I ran into the direction of the exit, but not as gracefully as I'd wanted to. I almost tripped over several plastic bags, feet, and already saw myself falling head-first onto the yellow carpet of the floor. I didn't though, I could regain my balance just in time not to completely embarrass myself in front of the other costumers, and I continued my way to the exit.
Outside, I quickly breathed in the warm Sacramento air. Not exactly what my overheating lungs and brain needed.
I continued running, and already heard Walter running after me, screaming my name.
I was humiliated enough, mainly by myself, the last thing I needed was for Walter to come back for Round Two.
I ran into the large crowd forming in the street, all frantically shopping summer clothes. Nobody had expected it to be so hot this time of the year. But then again, it was still California, you could never truly know what the nature had in store for this state.
I heard several exaggerated sighs as I almost pushed a few women to the floor. Of course they wouldn't understand why I was running like this, they weren't so stupid like me.
What on earth was I thinking telling my best friend I loved him? How could I? I hadn't even planned on telling him in the first place – and now I couldn't possibly believe I had blurted out my biggest secret seemingly on a whim. One minute we were laughing about Walter's party he'd thrown last week, his beautiful hazel eyes shimmering like they always did when he was talking about these parties; and the next, I was confessing the feelings for him I've been carrying for three years. Stupid Teresa.
"Reese, please!" I heard Walter scream behind me. I watched the crowd, who were seemingly oblivious to this whole situation, and turned around.
"Go home, Walter!" I exclaimed back.
And then I saw him throwing his hands up in the air and turn back into the horde of shoppers behind him. He had more women to be with.
I blinked frantically to get rid of my already falling tears, while I continued running to get as far away from the scene of my worst ever decision.
Part of me was already wanting Walter to run after me, gather me in his arms and tell me that he'd overreacted, that I hadn't been mistaken, but I knew that that wasn't going to happen. He loved me as just a friend, not a girlfriend.
Before I knew it, without really knowing how it happened, I ran into two talking women, knocking away a stall of stuffed animals, falling ungracefully to the floor. A loud thud marked the moment where I was united with the cold concrete, followed by loud screams of disagreement and a waterfall of colorful stuffed garbage.
"What the he-"
"What do you think you're doing?" the women exclaimed, incredulously.
"Crazy woman!" I heard a man with a thick French accent throw at me, and I assumed it was the stallholder. "Look at this mess! It is ruined. Ruined, I tell you!"
Instead of helping me up, the stallholder kept screaming at me, a lot of words not worth repeating. I hardly succeeded in putting my feet under me to stand up.
"I'm sorry, so sorry," I managed to mumble, grabbing armfuls of toys and wishing I could just disappear.
Of course, American as people were, the people surrounding the crime scene just kept staring at me, looking as I frantically tried to fix this mess I started. Like my day wasn't bad enough. I could faintly make out people grabbing their phones, filming what was happening now in front of their eyes, undoubtedly putting it on YouTube so the little friends I had could also enjoy the humiliation I was experiencing now.
My summer was completely ruined now. I would spend unneeded hours in the HQ now, wanting to restore what I've just demolished completely. And not only the puppet stall.
I bit back tears – I was Teresa Lisbon after all, I hardly ever cried – as I reached out to scoop more of the fallen bears and bunnies from the pavement...
... and that's when I saw him.
As I closed my fingers around a toy penguin, I was suddenly aware of a hand reaching out for a horse puppet next to it. Lifting my eyes I came face to face with quite the most gorgeous man I had ever seen.
The man had light blonde hair, hanging in gentle curls from the top of his head. His eyes were clear green, like mine but more beautiful, and they picked up the twinkling golden sunbeams shining into the streets. A slight shadow of stubble edged his jaw line and I noticed slight bags under his eyes, not too much but just enough to make him look like a living god.
"Hi," he said, his warm smile and kind eyes momentarily numbing the ache the fall to the floor had given me. "Need some help?"
I smiled back. "Please."
We slowly moved around each other, gathering the toys and placing them back at the place where they were meant to be – in the stall.
As we did so, I was more than aware that the handsome stranger was watching me, his shy smile appearing whenever our eyes met. This definitely made up for the fact that my complete life had just been destroyed.
Once me and the stranger had returned all the puppets to the stall, I turned to the stallholder and apologized again.
"Whatever," he murmured and returned back into the stall, not before exaggeratingly and dramatically – like only the French could do – slamming the door shut.
Now that the spectacle was over, the onlookers disappeared, continuing their frantic summer-sale-shopping. The stranger and I were left alone.
"Thank you," I said.
"You're very welcome," the stranger replied, a gentle smile on his face.
The stranger looked around, not long though, his eyes heading straight to mine when they were able to.
Okay, now he's being polite and thinking of a way to get away from me. Who wouldn't be?
"I, uhm... I'd better...," I said, nodding into the direction of the HQ – which was not in sight, but it was the only thing I could come up with now that I was so caught off guard by this sudden god in front of me – as if it was some sort of universal sign of saying that you needed to get to work. But he understood me, and nodded, before looking at his feet. Were they that interesting? He kept looking at them.
The stranger looked up to meet my eyes and smiled once again. "Hey, no problem. Enjoy your weekend."
I walked around him, into the direction I had just nodded at, internally strangling myself. Not content with merely ruining my friendship with Walter and making a complete fool of myself in full view of a large section of city shoppers, I had now embarrassed myself in front of a really good-looking guy. Nice work, Teresa, that's one for the collection.
I caught the shimmering of beautiful hand-painted glass, and reluctantly cocked my head to the side. There were these tear-shaped ornaments, and that was when I vaguely remembered that Van Pelt's birthday was coming up. Van Pelt loved these things, maybe I could get one for her.
I walked over to the window of the store, adoring the stuff stored there. I had to admit, Van Pelt had good taste for these things. Not that I would bother decorating my apartment with it, but hey, I at least didn't have to lie about liking it.
As I stared at the baubles, my green eyes faintly reflecting in it, I got lost in thoughts.
"It's beautiful, isn't it?" a somewhat deeper voice said behind me, causing me to jump and almost fall forward into the window. When I had found my heart again which had magically jumped out of my chest, I turned to look who had just violently pulled me out of my lines of thoughts, when my heart once again jumped out of my chest and I had to reluctantly search for it again. For above the typical blue/grey three-piece-suit was the face of the handsome stranger that had just helped me.
My breath caught in the back of my throat and nodded helplessly. Okay, I would once again embarrass myself on the romantic floors of my awkwardness building.
"I scared you? I'm sorry, I didn't mean to... I mean... I just wanted to check on you. You looked quite pale and I was afraid you would, you know, pass out or something."
"I'm fine. Thanks again for helping me."
The man shrugged. "You're welcome. I couldn't believe everybody was just watching. The manners."
I smiled, despite the blush I knew was glowing from my cheeks. "I think they thought I was part of the summer entertainment."
"Some entertainment," the man joked, but as soon as he noticed my reaction, he coughed quietly and his smile disappeared, but not completely, just slightly. "So... You're okay? I mean, you're not hurt or anything?"
I shook my head, though his concern was really touching. Especially taking in mind the excruciating day I had experienced up until now. But the last thing I needed was the pity of a strange gorgeous man – who had probably a wife back at home. Now that I thought about that key factor, I briefly looked at his ring finger. Much to my shock – which completely surprised me, because why should I be shocked? – I saw a golden wedding band shining away at his left hand. I felt my heart plummet – why, exactly? – as I looked up into his eyes again. "No, all good. Nothing's broken, I will live."
"Good." I then saw something in his eyes that was more than just concern. Concern for a stranger, that is. "Look, this is going to sound completely insane, so I'm just going to say it. I couldn't let you go without telling you that you're beautiful. That's why I followed you here. Please don't think I'm a psycho or that I do this a lot: I don't. But you're beautiful and I think you should know that."
That threw me. What the hell? I had no idea what to say.
Instead, I just looked at his left hand. The man frowned, but then realized what was on my mind and lifted his hand.
"This... is a long story. Too long. But I'm not married, trust me."
I opened my mouth to reply, but just then a shout from behind us caused him to turn.
"Mate, we've got to go. Now!"
What happened next happened so fast that I still don't quite know what really happened, but this is what I remembered:
When the handsome stranger turned back to face me, the way he looked at me took my breath away. It was the kind of look you would expect in these cheesy Hollywood movies, the ones from which you will say 'that's so not realistic', in the moment when the bridegroom turns to see his bride walking towards him for the first time; exactly the way Walter should have looked at me when I declared my love for him. But this wasn't Walter; and that, in itself, was part of the problem. Because – apart from not being the man whom I had publicly expressed my undying love not half an hour before – this person was almost perfect: from his wide, honest eyes and shy smile, to the faint smell of his cologne now surrounding me.
But most of all because of what happened next...
The stranger took a step back, fighting an inner turmoil that I could witness in his clear green eyes as the voice called him again, more insistent this time.
"Come on, we have to go!"
"One minute," he called back. Just then a hurrying shopper crashed into his shoulder, throwing him off balance – and straight into my arms.
My poor heart had just shot to the moon and back, and now it suffered even more than it could bare. In sheer surprise, I held on to him and his strong arms reached around to cradle my back. Walter was now completely forgotten, as my heart suddenly ached for this man, racing, and I looked into his eyes.
"I'm so sorry, I have to go," he whispered, his voice suddenly surprisingly small, and his lips were inches from mine. "But you're beautiful."
And then he kissed me. Just like that.
Although the kiss was the briefest ever – and I had experienced lots of brief kisses in my life, as the girl that not many boys liked I knew exactly how that felt – it was completely unlike any kiss I had ever had. Just like before, it was one of these kisses you would see in Hollywood movies. The tension building up in the entire film and then suddenly, in the last minutes of the movie, the two main characters kiss each other and all the viewers leave the cinema swooning and sighing. A kiss like that.
It was almost perfect. But almost. For as suddenly as he had appeared, he was gone.
I was frozen to the floor, not in any way knowing what I must have done now. The stranger's face was still imprinted in my mind, his beautiful green eyes and his perfect blonde curls.
Until one thought knocked on my brains:
"Wait! Come back!"
I ran after him, only faintly registering where I was and what I was doing. All I knew was that this man could be the love of my life, and I would just let him go without even knowing his name.
But after a few minutes of running, I stopped. I almost doubled over – I was quite fit, but the heat made it difficult to breathe and soon enough I was almost suffocating.
How was it possible for something so utterly perfect and amazing to happen and then to suddenly disappear as quickly as it arrived?
All I knew about him was what I could remember: his blonde curls, green eyes and blue/grey three-piece-suit. I hoped that would be useful, but just as I hoped it, I knew it wouldn't. There were probably thousands of guys out there, looking like that.
But when he looked into my eyes and kissed me, I felt like I had known him all my life. More than attraction, I felt a connection that I hadn't quite felt with anybody else up until now – other than Walter. That one single meeting in a lifetime of acquaintance was enough to alter my life dramatically.
I knew I had to find him.
A/N: So? I know, really AU and really bad. But tell me if you're interested in the rest of this story!