"Its official - prom fever has taken over sixth form." Maddy said as she opened her locker, rooting for her geography book.
"I feel like we're in a bad high school movie." Rhydian said, looking around at the overly glittery, brightly coloured posters.
"Is there such a thing as a good high school movie?" Maddy said, shoving her books into her backpack, tucking a stray strand of hair behind her ear as she did so.
"What are you two talking about?" Shannon asked, she and Tom catching up to them.
"Prom." Maddy said, nodding towards one of the posters.
"Oh, yeah! Exciting, isn't it?"
Maddy raised an eyebrow. "Who are you, and what have you done with my best friend?"
"Oh, come on Maddy! It's going to be a fun night." Shannon shrugged.
"If your idea of fun is spending an entire night stuck in a room with everyone in your form, yeah." Rhydian said.
"Exactly Shan - it's going to be boring."
"Whats going to be boring?" Kara piped up as they entered the classroom.
"Prom." Rhydian said, as if it was obvious.
"Oh, no way!" Kara said, looking between Rhydian and Maddy. "You two are coming, and that's final."
"You can't make us-"
"I can, and I will." Kara said. "We've put a lot of work into this! Everyone is coming! Its the last big occasion for us - don't be spoilsports."
"I think we'll be bigger spoilsports if we do go." Rhydian pointed out.
"Oh, ssh." Kara said. "Kay, do you have the tickets?"
Kay handed over two excessively bright pink tickets.
"Twenty quid please Rhydian!"
"You're not going to make your girlfriend pay for her own ticket, are you?" Kara said, waving the tickets in front of him.
"Yeah, be a gentleman Rhydian!" Jimi smirked.
"Oh, shut up Jimi." Rhydian rolled his eyes, rooting in his pocket for money, handing it over to Kara.
"Its formalwear, so.. Shirt and tie at least please!" Kara beamed, handing over the tickets.
Rhydian took them, slumping into his seat next to Maddy. "I guess we're going to prom then."
"What a romantic way of asking me!" Maddy teased, taking one the tickets.
Rhydian rolled his eyes. "There's nothing romantic about a room full of sweaty, drunken teenagers."
"Mm, you're painting a great picture of it all." Maddy laughed. "Personally, I'm excited to see you in a suit."
"Personally, I'm excited to see you in a dress."
Maddy's eyes widened, much to Rhydian's delight. "Didn't think of that one, did you?" He grinned widely.
"Kara is so dead..."
"Maddy, will you hurry on? You're going to be late!" Emma called, exasperated. The Vaughans were in the living room, chatting to Daniel, Rhydian looking more uncomfortable then she'd ever seen him in the four years he'd been in Stoneybridge. It was hilarious, really.
What wasn't hilarious was her daughters refusal to come into the living room when they should have left for the dance, oh, about twenty minutes ago.
"Madeline Smith, I swear-" Emma cut herself off as Maddy appeared, looking sullen.
"Don't say anything mum."
"I was just going to say I think you look beautiful." Emma said, reaching out to fix a stray piece of Maddy's hair. "Oh, Maddy..."
"Mum, are you going to start crying?"
Emma smiled. "No, I'll wait until you leave."
"Go on through to the living room love, Rhydian and the Vaughans are here." Emma said, nudging her daughter. "He looks good in a suit you know."
Maddy flushed. "Mum!"
Emma rolled her eyes. "Move it Grumpy Pants."
Maddy reluctantly started to move, her balance a little off in the shoes Kara had practically thrown at her head and forced her to wear when all the girls had gone shopping. That had been a bit weird. If you had asked her four years ago would the K's be some of her close friends, Maddy would have laughed for about a week straight. But, they had merged with another school from the next town over for sixth form, and the Stoneybridge kids had kind of just stuck together (and somehow, the K's really grew on her..)
She pushed open the slightly ajar living room door, stepping into the room. As soon as she appeared, everyone turned to look at her, and Maddy just wanted to shrivel up and die. Kind of.
"You look gorgeous Maddy." Sarah smiled at her, poking her foster son. "Doesn't she look beautiful Rhydian?"
Maddy looked at Rhydian, her cheeks a horrific bright pink. She could only assume Sarah had battered Rhydian into the dark grey suit he was wearing, and if she was going to be honest, she was really glad that Sarah had done so. Rhydian did look good in a suit - her mam was right.
Which was a little bit weird to think about.
"Photos!" Daniel announced. "We need to take photos - get over there Rhydian."
"Wait, one second!" Sarah said, rooting in her handbag. "You need to give her this first Rhydian."
Rhydian took the box from his foster mum, holding it out to Maddy.
"You need to put it on her Rhyd, not just throw it at her." Frank grinned.
Maddy barely held in laughter as Rhydian's cheeks flushed pink, the sound of him ripping at the box containing her corsage filling the living room. Dropping the now empty box on the couch, Rhydian put the flower on Maddy's hand. "Thank you." Maddy smiled.
"Okay, now we can take pictures!" Sarah said, producing her camera. "Put your arm around her Rhyd - and try not to look like we're sending you to your execution."
"Feels like you are." Rhydian mumbled, putting an arm around Maddy.
Maddy couldn't hold back a snort of laughter this time, making Rhydian smile.
"You do look beautiful Mads." He said quietly, looking over at her.
Maddy couldn't help but smile. "You don't scrub up too badly either."
As soon as Maddy and Rhydian stepped out of the car, their ears were assaulted with overly loud music and the not so dulcet tones of screaming teenage girls in high heels.
"This is going to be fun.." Rhydian muttered as he and Maddy started to head for the hotel.
"Mm.." Maddy grabbed onto his arm suddenly, her grip tight.
"I can't walk in these bloody shoes." Maddy said. "You're going to have to carry me home tonight."
Rhydian grinned. "That's going to be funny."
Maddy rolled her eyes. "Shut up."
"What? It is funny! Anyway, the shoes can't be that bad, can they?"
Maddy gave him a pointed look. "Have you ever tried walking in heels?"
"Then shut up Rhydian."
Rhydian held up the arm Maddy wasn't holding onto with a vice like grip in a motion of surrender. "Shutting up."
"I hope they have dinner soon, I'm starving." Maddy said after a silence as they pushed their way into reception. It was full to bursting, their form standing around drinking champagne, talking excitedly.
"Rhydian! Maddy!" Kara squealed excitedly when she saw them. "We've over here, hurry! You're late - all the champagne is nearly gone."
"That's completely Katrina's fault." Jimi smirked.
"Jimi, will you be quiet?" Kara rolled her eyes. "Don't you dare ruin tonight!"
Jimi rolled his eyes in response. "You're the only one getting so worked up about tonight Kaz."
"She's right you know, we should enjoy tonight." Shannon said.
Maddy raised an eyebrow at her best friend. "Shan? I think the champagne has gone straight to your head."
"It probably has." Shannon said with a hiccup. "But! But! Its fine. Its all good. Are you wearing a suit Rhydian?"
"Formal dress code Shan."
"Good point." Shannon said, nodding solemnly.
A loud ringing of a bell interrupted the conversation.
"Its time for dinner." Kara said, grabbing onto Jimi's arm and pulling him towards the room where the dance was actually being held. "Jimi! Will you walk a bit faster, seriously?"
"Jimi does realise how whipped he is at this point, yeah?" Rhydian said.
"Says you!" Shannon sniggered. "You're at a dance! Wearing a suit!"
Harry laughed, putting a guiding hand on Shannon's waist. "Lets go sit down Shan."
"Its like half eight, how is Shan off her face already?" Rhydian said as they walked into the dining room.
"I don't think she's actually had that much to drink." Maddy said thoughtfully. "I think she's just a bit of a lightweight."
Rhydian snorted. "She's going to be fun by the end of the night."
"Harry'll look after her." Maddy said, following the rest of their friends to their table. "He always does."
"They're kind of an unlikely couple, but they work really well, don't they?"
"Mm, he really loves her I guess."
"I really love you."
"Hey there Mr Soppy Pants, whats up?"
"Maddy? Shut up."
"You love me though, so you know.."
Rhydian flicked the side of her forehead. "You can be annoying when you want to be, you know that?"
"Absolutely, but you put up with it." Maddy said, pressing a light kiss to his lips as they sat down at the table.
"For reasons unknown." Rhydian joked.
"Shut up." Maddy nudged his side.
"Are we just going to be telling each other to shut up the whole night, yeah?"
"Absolutely." Maddy said. "Have to do something to entertain ourselves at this stupid dance, right?"
"Rhydian! Maddy!" Kara said. "Stop moaning you two, seriously."
"We're not moaning-"
"No moaning allowed at the Stoneybridge table."
Maddy barely held in laughter. "No moaning at the Stoneybridge table. Got it."
"There's tomato sauce on the chicken." Maddy said sadly, looking at her dinner.
"Its a tomato and red wine jus!" Kara piped up.
"There's literally no difference Kara. Its still tomato sauce." Tom said.
"And I hate tomatoes." Maddy sighed, poking at the piece of chicken mournfully.
"Give it here." Rhydian said, reaching for her plate.
"I should have asked if there was tomato sauce on it."
"Its probably all premade Mads, they wouldn't have done anything." Tom said, reaching across the table for the salt. "Unless you're a vegetarian, I think we get what we get."
"But thankfully, you have me around to fix it." Rhydian said, handing her back her plate. He had managed to scrape most of the sauce off, adding it to his already overflowing plate. "Good thing I like tomatoes."
"Thanks Rhydian." Maddy gave him a grateful smile.
"Also, I gave you my broccoli, because you're a little weirdo and you like it."
"You're weird for not liking it."
"No one likes broccoli, seriously."
Maddy grinned through a mouthful of broccoli. "I love it."
"You look so attractive right now."
"I'm always gorgeous." Maddy said, giving him a green tinged smile, Rhydian reaching over to push her mouth closed. "Chew like a lady."
"I'm not dancing."
"Rhydian, get up."
"I'm not dancing Mads." Rhydian folded his arms across his chest, shaking his head. "No way."
"Oh, but you are." Maddy said, grabbing his hand. "If you don't get up now, I'm just going to set Kara on you. She's turned into promzilla, so... Make your choice."
"Don't even try and deny it anymore by the way - you're having a good time."
"So are you."
"I'm allowed to!"
"Then so am I!"
"Then get your ass onto the dancefloor and look like you're having a good time." Maddy said, pushing him ahead of her. It was well past midnight, and to say their form had gotten a little messy would be an understatement. Absolutely legless would be more accurate.
"Sometimes I wonder if we're missing out seeing as alcohol doesn't really affect us."
"Seeing as Katrina was vomiting in the sink last time I saw her, maybe not." Maddy said, pulling him through the crowd to where their friends were, Jimi making Kara laugh hysterically as he did his version of the awkward robot.
"I'm not letting him forget this!" Tom yelled over the music, his phone held in front of his face.
"That's blackmail material for the rest of our lives." Rhydian replied with a laugh.
"MACARENA!" Shannon yelled as the song changed, the all too familiar song blaring out over the speakers.
"Are we really doing this Mads?"
"Yeah, we are." Maddy grinned, hiking up the end of her dress. "Get moving Grumpy Pants."
"I'm so tired." Shannon said, flopping down next to Maddy at their table. "So, so tired. I think I'm going to die."
"Keep drinking your water Shan." Harry said, checking his watch. "We're going to get kicked out soon anyway."
"Oh! That means there's a slow dance coming."
"Does it?" Rhydian raised an eyebrow. He and Maddy had pulled their chairs closer together, Maddy's head leaning on his shoulder as they watched the goings on of the dance.
"It does, actually. There's a slow song, and then a stupidly fast one to finish off." Harry said. "Get everyone excited so we're all buzzing going home."
"He's right." Tom said. "Its like, a rule of DJ-ing."
"DJ-ing has rules?"
"No, but.." Tom grinned as Coldplay stared blaring out over the speakers. "I was still right."
"Come on then." Maddy said, moving her legs from where they were resting on Rhydian's lap.
"No way. I don't think I could get those things back on." Maddy said. "You'll just have to be careful not to step on my toes.."
"Easily sorted." Rhydian said, hooking his arms around her waist, pulling her up so she was standing on his toes.
"I feel like I'm five again." Maddy said. "Dad used to do this with me all the time."
"I had a foster dad when I was five that used to mess around with me like this." Rhydian said, smiling softly to himself.
"What happened to him?"
"I got older." Rhydian said. "Started causing them too much trouble, and they had their own kids to worry about, so I got sent away."
"Well, you have me." Maddy said. "And mam, and dad - and Jana, and the wildpack. You don't need to worry about being sent anywhere ever again."
"Thanks Mads." Rhydian said. "I love you."
"Love you too." Maddy said, craning her neck so she could kiss Rhydian. He had definitely gotten taller since their first kiss - definitely. But even the height difference couldn't make her put on those ridiculous high heels again. Nothing would ever make her put those stupid heels on again. Ever.
"I'm kind of glad we came now." Rhydian commented as they gently swayed to the music.
"I'm really glad we came." Maddy said. "It's been fun. However tired I am."
"And the night is not ending yet!" Kara interrupted with a grin. "You're all coming back to mine for an after party - I don't care how tired you all are, its going to be brilliant - no arguments!"
"No arguments!" Maddy echoed, laughing.
"No arguments." Rhydian said. "Your parents don't mind?"
"My parents are in London until Sunday, so its fine."
"Alright sixth form, your night is sadly about to come to an end - I hope you all had a great night, and an even better summer, and we'll see you in August for results!" Jefferies yelled through the microphone. "Make sure you all get home safely, and don't try and walk home in this dark. That's about it guys, so don't forget any of your things, and like I said, have a good summer."
The lights in the room turned back on, the bright lights practically blinding everyone.
"I've never been so glad about the fact you only live around the corner Kara.." Tom yawned as they started to move from the dance floor.
"Tonight was fun Kara." Maddy admitted. "You guys did a good job."
"See! I told you everyone would love tonight." Kara beamed. "Didn't I? Jimi helped me pick the colour scheme for the tables."
"Whipped.." Tom muttered, smirking.
"Yeah.." Jimi said, shrugging. "I know."
"Who are you and what have you done with Jimi?" Tom said jokingly, slinging an around his friend's shoulder as they left the hotel.
"Need a lift?" Rhydian asked with a grin, stooping down so Maddy could get on his back.
"You're the best." Maddy said, hooking her arms around his neck.
"I am really glad we came tonight." Maddy said. "I know you don't really like parties all that much, but it was really fun."
"It was." Rhydian said. "Its weird to think that everyone is going to be moving on soon, isn't it?"
"It is." Maddy said. "But.. You know that no matter what happens, and no matter what universities we get into, you'll always have me, right? I want to be with you forever."
Rhydian couldn't help but smile. "I want to be with you forever too Mads."
"Is that a promise then?"
"Yeah Mads, its a promise."
"Good." Maddy said, pressing a kiss to the side of his head. "I love you - a lot."
"Love you too Mads."
Rhydian's head was spinning when he woke up the next morning, his hair standing on end as he looked around Kara's living room. They had all ended up staying over at Kara's the previous night, and there was sleeping teenagers all over the floor. And he was pretty sure that Shannon was wearing Harry's tie as a headband. He was ridiculously tired and badly in need of his own bed and a shower, but he didn't really care - much.
The memories of what Maddy had said to him last night cancelled out how crap he felt.
Pulling his jacket around Maddy more, Rhydian flopped down next to her again, his eyes already half closing.
"Love you..." She mumbled, curling in closer to him,
Rhydian smiled. "Love you too Mads."
Forever with Maddy Smith didn't sound half bad..
author's note; this started off as a short fic based on a message I got from supeaunaturelle on tumblr that was about Maddy and Rhydian being forced to go to a dance, and it just sort of turned into this and I have no excuses I just like fluff (and seriously this whole Jimi/Kara thing came out of nowhere but apparently I ship them now so think what you will...)
As always, thank you for all the lovely reviews - and feedback is always much appreciated!