A/N: Fic idea came from a Paradox thread on livejournal. I am Sarai_90.
By absolutely no account can I actually hack myself. Lol.
Penny, in a fit of determination, decided to enroll in a history class at Pasadena City College. It was exaclty what she needed - not very demanding, mentally or schedule...ly. It was a sort of testing-the-waters class to see if she really wanted to go back to school. She was feeling really good about herself and her choice.
She went to the school's bookstore to get her history text and as she was paying for it she saw a brochure for the school (Who puts a brochure for the school up in the school's own bookstore?) next to the register. On it was a woman studying and a man playing with a hacky sack. It looked vaguely familiar, but she wasn't concerned with that. What she was concerned with was that the girl was blond and the guy was tall and skinny with dark hair. At a glance it almost looked like Sheldon and herself.
I wonder if Sheldon would hack, she thought. "Do you have hacky sacks?" she asked the cashier.
"Yeah," he replied. "They're over in the corner. Want me to ring one up?"
"Um, yeah, sure." If Sheldon doesn't like it I'll just keep it for myself.
When Penny got home she texted Sheldon what she thought was a perfectly understandable message.
Hey, wanna learn how to hack?
Sheldon's reply, however, suggested that she had been less than clear.
Penny, I've known how to hack since I was 7. What could you possibly teach me that I don't already know?
Penny thought about what she said and realized she'd used slang without realizing it.
No, I meant hacking as in hacky sack. It's like a crocheted bean bag the size of your palm. Just come over when you get home and I'll show you.
*knock knock knock* "Penny."
*knock knock knock* "Penny."
*knock knock knock* "Penny."
"Come in, Sheldon," she yelled from across her living room. She was trying to see how long she could keep the hacky sack in the air. So far her best is twelve hits. This is what Sheldon walked in on.
"...ven, eight, nine, ten, eleven, twelve, thirteen- shit!" Penny bent over to pick up the hacky sack and inadvertently gave Sheldon an eyefull of ass. When she straightened and turned she saw his eyes and knew he had stared. He didn't blush, but she knew that look.
Barefoot, she padded over to him. "This is a hacky sack. The game is to hack. Keep it off the ground as long as you can. It's like soccer, but with this little bean bag thing. You can't use your hands. Watch." She proceeded to demonstrate. Right foot twice, left foot twice, right knee once, but then she miscalculated and it dropped to the floor.
Sheldon stared at the brightly crocheted bag of styrofoam beads until Penny spoke. "Anyway, that's called 'hacking.' 'Cause it's a hacky sack. Give it a try." She bent to pick it up again, but Sheldon was a little too fast for her. He snatched it up and moved a step back.
He got to two the first time. Then four. Then five.
"You'll get the hang of it," she smiled. He looked adorable with that pouty frown of concentration. "Here, toss it to me. We'll play together. Just tossing back and forth, but no hands." Sheldon nodded and tossed it.
They hacked together for about twenty minutes. When the hacky sack dropped (after an impressive eighteen hits) Sheldon picked it up and handed it back to Penny. "Thank you for teaching me. It was fun." His smile was incredibly sweet and endearing. Pushing the small bean bag back into his hands she said, "Keep it. Practice on your own." Then she grinned. "It can be our thing. I won't tell anyone if you don't."
He seemed to ponder the thought a moment, then nodded and returned her grin. "I like the sound of that. I'll practice. But you have to practice, too. I wouldn't want you to feel bad when I'm better than you are at something you taught me."
"Deal." His handshake was warm and firm, if a little too short for her liking.
"I got to forty three today. What's your high score?"
They were sitting on her couch watching a movie. She chose Clueless. They'd watched it before, but it was one of her favorites when it came out, and she liked to torture Sheldon when she could.
"My high score is forty seven." Her smile was smug and Sheldon wanted nothing more than to take that smugness away. Kissing her smile away crossed his mind, but they both had high opinions of fidelity, so he pushed it to the back of his mind. Instead he vowed to best her.
"It appears that you are the better hacker. For now."
A week later it was Sheldon's turn to pick the movie. He chose Serenity, because it had been a few weeks since he had viewed the cinematic companion to Joss Whedon's hit series Firefly. Not because Penny liked to curl into him when they found Book, or because she held him tight when Wash says "I'm a leaf on the wind." Definitely not.
"Howard and Raj are trying to figure out what I do every day at 2:45." Of course Penny knows that's when he practices, but as they like to keep this as 'their thing' no one else knows.
"Oh, sweetie, just tell them they don't deserve to know." She pat his upper arm. He didn't flinch. By now he was used to Penny's little touches here and there.
"They set up a camera in the basement room." He was annoyed. Really, couldn't he have twenty minutes to himself?
"So change the video feed," she suggested. "You're smart. You can do that, right? Make it a prank. They deserve it after trying to be nosy."
Remembering his wormhole doodle from that morning, he said, "I have the perfect idea."
They finished the movie in relative silence, broken only by Penny's tears and Sheldon quietly finishing Wash's statement. "Watch how I soar."