Overcooked Spaghetti, an Austin & Ally fiction
Disclaimer: I do not own Austin & Ally or Rugrats. I had some leftover quotes from my research, so I've made it a two shot. As always, requests and reviews are greatly appreciated.
I got up, but my legs felt like Jello. The red kind, not the green kind with the bananas that I like. -Tommy Pickles
There is nothing more terrifying than trying to buy a birthday present for the most amazing girl in the world in hopes that she will take the step from best friend to best girlfriend.
Okay, so there probably is, but for the time being, he feels like someone has scared the pants off of him.
He looks down.
Still wearing pants.
That's a good sign.
"May I help you?" The man behind the counter pulls off his glasses and wipes them with a cloth. He places them back on his petite nose.
The two beady eyes blink behind the lenses. They're judging him.
"Um yes. I'm looking for a chain for a necklace."
"How long?" The employee poises his key over the lock on the case.
He should know this. He's had his arms around her so many times. He could measure against the length of his arm, but he's pretty sure this guy isn't too fond of him.
"Well, it's for this girl," he starts. The man raises an eyebrow at him. He figures he might as well give it a shot. "You know the girl who works at Sonic Boom?"
"No." His patience is wearing thin.
A girl walks past the kiosk. Austin points her out. "She's about her size."
The man sighs and opens the case, pulling out a chain.
"This one should do. If not, keep the receipt and exchange it in thirty days." He rings up the purchase.
From there he rushes home. In the bathroom he steals a bottle of his mother's nail polish. He skillfully paints an A on a guitar pick.
A for Austin.
He's stringing it onto the chain when he's called down to dinner. They're having pancakes, and he begins to settle down.
That is until, "Austin, is that blood on your finger?"
"It's nail polish mom."
He really hope Ally likes her present.
Without you kids, life would be pretty boring, that's for sure. -Grandpa Lou
There are some things in life that are incredibly painful, each with its own reward.
Booster shots have lollipops. The good grape kind that turn your tongue purple.
Broken hearts have ice cream. Bounties of ice cream that can be eaten without anyone yelling about poor eating habits, because people with broken hearts are depressed and ice cream heals everything.
And homework has Ally. It's incredibly boring, but she's agreed to tutor him, and that makes things a little less boring.
Especially when she bribes him with 'not-dates'. As in, despite-what-Dez-and-Trish-say-about-your-rewards-for-finishing-your-homework-these-are-not-dates.
He wishes Dez and Trish were right.
Today she's promised him she'll go to the arcade with him. Normally she wouldn't, but if it motivates him to get his math homework done, she's more than happy to watch him play a couple of games of Skee ball.
They make their way to the change machine. He inserts a five, and she waits for him, fiddling with her necklace. Upon further inspection he realizes which necklace it is.
Ally has many necklaces. So he wasn't disappointed, or at least not too badly, when she didn't wear the necklace he got her every day.
But on the off-chance he catches her wearing it, like today, it makes him smile inside.
It's been nine months now, and he still hasn't told her that A isn't for Ally.
A is for Austin, and he's going to prove it. He scoops his coins into his pocket.
"Ready for some Skee ball?" He leads her to the machine and deposits a coin, handing her a ball.
"Wait, you want me to play Skee ball?" He takes her hand and guides it back. She sinks the shot.
He picks up a second ball and sinks it again. "Mhm."
It's so intimate that by the time she gets the hang of the game he's reluctant to let her go.
"Go Ally!" he cheers as her tickets are dispensed. His tickets are coming out of the machine next to his.
He cannot believe her stack is taller.
Then again, he can. She is very distracting when playing Skee ball.
They pool their ticket together for a stuffed llama. When she tries to hand it to him, he shakes his head.
"You earned it."
It's just another not-date.
My dad says that sometimes, if you fall off a horse, you gotta get back on, and if you get knocked out of the ring, you gotta get back in. -Susie Carmichael
This year he promises himself that he's going to ask Ally out. More than that, he's going to tell her how he really feels and they are going to last. It's not going to be one of those go on one date and then go back to being friends ordeals. He's in this for the long run.
It's been five days since his resolution, and it's already being broken. And not on his account.
No, it's not his fault.
It's Dallas's, because he's decided to ask her out, and he happens to be the guy of her dreams. Or was. He's not sure anymore. His name hasn't come up in conversation lately.
He's glad the same can't be said about himself.
They're in Sonic Boom, straightening the guitars. Then he hears him.
"Hey Ally, you got a minute?" Austin cringes. First off, it's 'have' a minute. (Yes, all of Ally's tutoring has made him more aware of his grammar, thank you very much.) Second off, he knows that this annoys her more than him and that she most definitely does not have a minute for people named Dallas.
Apparently she's not as aware of this as he is.
Dallas gives Austin a look, but he doesn't take the hint. Anything he wants to say to Ally he can say in front of him. "I was wondering if you were doing anything tomorrow afternoon."
He wants to step forward. He wants to say that they're spending the day together. Not that they had official plans, but they always share their weekends.
She isn't saying anything. On one hand, she wants to seem busy, like she has a social life. But on the other, she's been waiting forever, and she's not going to let the opportunity pass her.
"Weren't we going to work on that song tomorrow afternoon Ally?" He tries not to sound jealous.
"Oh, well maybe another time." Dallas stuffs his hands in his pockets.
Ally makes up her mind. "We can work on it another time, right Austin?"
Those eyes. Those hopeful eyes with that hopeful smile. He really needs to stop falling for them.
"Sure. No problem."
Resolutions are made to be broken.
Hi, I love you. Can I have a hug? -Goober
He is freaking out. He has made so much spaghetti in the past month that when he gets home and checks the cupboard, there's only enough for one plate.
And while sharing was cute for Lady and Tramp, his kitchen table is simply too big to put the plate in the center and have them reach for it. They'd have to lay on the table.
If he ever lays her on the table, he can guarantee that it will not be for spaghetti.
He loses time going to the store to buy another box. He's half an hour behind now, and he still needs to take a shower.
The water is boiling on the stove when she shows up. He dumps the strands in, running to answer the door.
"Hey Ally." She's still in his sweatshirt. He kisses her nose like at the lockers.
"Hi," she replies, being tugged into the kitchen.
He walks over to the stove. The noodles are still cooking. He turns back to her. "It should be ready soon."
She smiles and pulls two plates out of the cupboard.
"You don't have to do that. You're the guest." The forks are taken out.
"I don't mind." She sets the table, noticing the unlit candle as the centerpiece. It hadn't been there before.
It's a romantic notion.
She wraps her arms around his waist. He's supposed to be watching the spaghetti, making sure it's perfect. But nothing bad could happen if he turns around to hug her back, right?
Wrong. He was very, very wrong.
He hugs her too long, and the pasta is getting a bit mushy. It's barely noticeable. Except he needed this to be perfect, and it had been every time he had made it, and the one time he needed things to work out, it overcooks.
"Drat," he mutters, spooning it out onto her plate.
"Something wrong?" she asks.
He rests the pot on a trivet. "I wanted things to be perfect, and I overcooked the spaghetti."
She swirls a bit around on her fork. It looks normal to her. She takes a bite, and he studies her expression.
"It's perfect." She wipes her mouth. "And I'm not just saying that because I love you."
Suddenly swallowing got a lot harder.
"I love you too," he says when he finally gets it down.
Maybe he wasn't such a failure after all.
I'll never fall in love again! At least not until the first grade. -Angelica Pickles
When she leaves, he falls backwards onto his bed. It's a lot to take in. This morning he was pining for his best friend, and now he can't fall asleep because she told him she loves him.
She told him that she loves him, and that he does not overcook his spaghetti.
And she agreed to be his date to the Valentine's dance.
So pretty much he's on cloud 900 (cloud 9 just isn't high enough to express how he feels) and has to fall asleep so he can wake up for school tomorrow.
The last time he had thought he was in love was sixth grade. There was a girl, Tonya. She was pretty. She was a cheerleader.
He was too young to know what love was. He thought the butterflies in his stomach meant something.
Tonya had a straight blond ponytail. She was tall. She was loud. She was everything Ally isn't.
And that's the problem.
He likes how Ally's curly brown hair is down, begging for him to run his hand through it.
He likes how Ally is short, and how he can envelope her with his body, hiding her from the damage of the world.
He likes how Ally is quiet, but can break out of her shell. How she's afraid to perform, but got on stage and did it anyway (albeit under disguise) because she knew he'd be right by her side.
He likes that she trusts him without any stipulations, and how he can trust her back.
He likes that she isn't Tonya.
He loves that she is Ally.
Hello there. Just in time for a spot of tea, eh wot? -Spike
He holds his cup up for her. "Why yes Ally, I would love more tea."
She refills his cup with more iced tea. It's too hot out for regular tea, a stifling 98 degrees.
"What about you Dougie?" she pretends to fill the dolphin's cup.
She looks into Lloyd the llama's cup. It's full.
"It is way too hot out." She pulls he hair back, fanning her neck.
"Agreed." He takes a long drink of his tea. "Dez said it's supposed to get up over 100 this weekend."
They both groan.
There's another two weeks of school to go, and if this heat wave lasts much longer he's going to go insane. The short shorts are getting shorter, Ally's included.
It does not help him focus in class.
Not that there is much left to do. He's a senior, just buying his time like the rest of them, waiting for graduation.
"So you're really okay with not going to college right away?" he asks.
She lets her hair fall. "Yeah. I mean, our careers are skyrocketing. We're a team."
He leans in to kiss her.
"We're being watched."
He thinks about it for a minute.
"Boys, close your eyes."
Well, last I heard, he was still trying to assemble the thing. Stopped eating, stopped sleeping, just spends all his time working on that toy. Looks good though. Lost a lot of weight. -Charles Finster
Remember when he said he couldn't think of anything more terrifying than asking Ally out?
Yeah. He thought of something.
There is nothing more terrifying than asking the love of your life to marry you.
Especially when that girl is Ally Dawson.
There are so many possibilities, and every one seems to have a flaw.
He could propose to her on stage. Except she has stage fright. And while it's not as severe as it used to be, he'd rather she not freak out when he proposes.
He could propose to her over spaghetti dinner. It would remind her of their first date. Except he guarantees he'd screw it up because he'd be too distracted to make sure the pasta doesn't overcook.
He could just get her alone and tell her how he feels. He could propose to her at the piano bench, where all the greatest things come to fruition. All the songs, their first kiss (on the lips that is), their first kiss that Dez and Trish interrupted (two separate incidents, equally enjoyable). And now it'd be the place that he proposed.
Except things don't go the way he plans. He buys a ring. Every day he goes to the practice room, sits at the piano and practices his speech. He keeps the ring box in his pocket. And when she comes in he's playing the piano, acting like everything is perfectly normal.
It's that one day. That one day where he sits on top of the piano, because Dez said it would help him become one with it, thus calming his nerves. He's so calm he closes his eyes. The words pour out.
And then he hears her voice.
So many hours of planning, and none of the plans put into place.
It's too late to fix it.
But she said yes, so was it ever even broken?
I say we take his undies next time. -Lil Deville
Her husband is singing in the shower. She's packing their suitcases for the tour. His is finished, but the zipper is stuck.
She enters the bathroom. The sound of his voice gets louder. His silhouette is dancing, rubbing soap across his body. There is something hypnotizing about it.
So rather than ask him for help, which is what she had originally come in to do, she makes a bold choice.
She swipes his boxers off the floor.
She's halfway through the door when she turns around.
Better take the pants, just to be thorough.
He emerges a few minutes later, towel wrapped around his waist.
"Ally, have you seen my clothes?" He walks over to where she is struggling with the zipper and gives it a yank. It closes.
She grins at him. "They're in the suitcase."
Then what was he supposed to wear tonight? Or tomorrow morning, boarding the tour bus? He was pretty sure Jimmy wouldn't be too happy if he got on pantless.
"I cannot go without pants." He unzips the suitcase.
She sets her hand on top of his and kisses his neck. He reconsiders.
"Well maybe just for tonight."
Life is so hard Tommy. Sometimes I think it's the hardest thing there is. -Chuckie Finster
Ally loves being on tour with Austin, but there are some downfalls.
The fans. She cannot believe the nerve of some people. They see the wedding ring and he still gets marriage proposals. They grab for his hair. And it's not just even teenage girls that do it. They were at a truck stop the one afternoon for lunch and a full grown man had picked up his napkin when they left, asking him to autograph it. It was most likely to sell online, but it was creepy nonetheless.
And then there was the paparazzi. Every moment was photographed. Austin was nice enough to take a picture or two before moving on. But there were the ones that didn't quit. Ones that followed them everywhere. Did they really need photos of them holding hands again? Because they already had plenty of those, and frankly, she wanted to hold her husband's hand without having to worry if her hair was frizzing or if there was something in her teeth.
He didn't even have to be around. They'd take pictures of her by herself. She was Ally Moon, songwriter and wife to Austin Moon. And there were some moments she'd rather they not record. Like that rest stop in Arizona, where she bought that pregnancy test.
One of the worst things was the pregnancy. She wasn't sure how far along she was. All she knew was that she was late and the test was positive.
Every night he wrapped his arms around her and she worried that he'd feel the bump. A small one is forming. She holds her breath and hopes he doesn't notice.
"Who's ready to hear the best song ever written?" he asks the audience. They roar. "Well, I may be a bit biased. This one's for you Ally Moon."
She smooths her shirt over her stomach.
As soon as this tour is over, she's going to tell him.
We got shopping lists, candy wrappers, and what appears to be a moldy bag of fries. -Drew Pickles
Having dealt with her cravings for a few weeks now, he's noticed a pattern.
Pickles and Fruity Mint Swirl.
"You'll never guess what's on sale this week." He folds the ad over and hands it to her.
She looks down at it. "Fiber bars? Are you trying to tell me something Austin?"
His eyes widen.
"What? No. I was talking about the pickles." He points in the ad.
She nods understandingly. She had been craving them nonstop, and here they were, half the price they usually were.
"We should stock up." She places her hands on the table to stand up.
"I'll go get the keys."
At the store they fill an buggy with jars. Dill and sweet. The shelf is cleared, leaving only the bread and butter pickles.
When they reach the cash register, they get a few odd looks. He's used to being looked at for his fame. But the way that their eyes are judging his wife and her cravings does not please him. He tightens his grip on her. They avert their gazes.
"Find everything you were looking for today?" the clerk asks.
"Yes, thank you," Ally answers as the clerk counts the number of jars in their buggy.
The assistant bags them, trying not to stare at Ally's baby bump.
A flash goes off.
Three weeks later, he opens a magazine to find their picture, along with a caption. 'Baby Moon craving pickles .'
Is it so much to ask for his unborn child to be given some privacy?
He is not letting them anywhere near her when she goes into labor.
And we didn't have time to make dinner for you, so here's a piece of cheese. -Charlotte Pickles
For the first anniversary that the baby is around, Austin and Ally both agree to spend the night at home.
That is, until Trish and Dez showed up on their porch.
"You two need to go out. Leave the babysitting to us," Trish demands, leaning over the crib.
They share a look. "Are you sure?"
Dez claps him on the back. "Of course buddy."
So they hit the road and end up at the local pancake joint.
"I know it's not fancy," Austin apologizes.
"Austin. We've spent the last year eating out and surviving on microwave meals at home. Some simple home cooked goodness is just what we need." She closes her menu.
He stacks his menu on top of her's.
The waitress comes to take their order. When she leaves, he takes her hand under the table. It's discrete. Not that anyone is around to see them. There's no paparazzi, and the only patrons around are a couple of older guys sitting in a corner booth. They're laughing so hard their dentures threaten to fall out.
He thinks they'll be okay.
He spots the necklace hanging from her neck. Except it doesn't look the same as before.
She leans forward. He takes the pick between his fingers.
The A is still there, but there's a small number two hovering above it.
"A wasn't for Ally, was it?"
He lets go. "No."
"A was for Austin?" She sits back in her seat.
"See that number two?" She points to it.
"Yeah. I was wondering about that." He taps her foot with his.
She taps back. "Two A's. For Austin and Ally."
Best anniversary ever.