"Will you marry me?"
Baffled she stared up at him, "...what?".
"Will. You. Marry me Helga?" he asked slowly and a bit exasperated this time.
"...I heard you the first time..."
"Then why do you keep asking?" he huffed annoyed.
"I—you do realize what you just asked me?"
He scoffed a little affronted at that, "Of course I do."
"And do you realize that perhaps this isn't the best time to ask that question?"
"Why?" Grunting he lifted a bit.
"Aside from the fact that we are hanging from a vine over what is easily a 40 feet drop?..." Glancing down at the river below she held tighter to him and quickly looked back up, "In the middle of the jungle," and noticed another vine that was hanging over the edge of the cliff close to them, "We are also, just 18 football head."
"You don't have to marry me now—hold on," he started climbing as soon as he felt her hold tighten around his middle, "there's no hurry."
"Was this a 'spur of the moment' kind of thing?" if she stretched her hand a bit maybe she could reach that other vine.
"No," seeing what she was trying to do he started swinging them back and forth, "I've been thinking about it for a while..." he heard her snort of disbelief "Ok, fine. I've been seriously thinking about it since we started searching for my parents."
"Ah" grabbing the vine, she tried to get a better grip on it "so...didn't want to introduce me, ugh, to your mom and dad, uf—how do you get a hold? This thing is slippery!"
"Twist it around your hands."
"...Got it," letting go of him she climbed until she was looking down at him and started swinging again, pushing off the side of the cliff to get better momentum. Once he had a hold on the vine, she went back to climbing. "So, as I was saying. You didn't want to introduce me as—" making sure her foot found a solid rock she grabbed on to a tree branch and pushed herself up and off the side of the cliff, rolling a bit on the ground to distance herself from the edge, raising her voice to him "as, 'friends with benefits?' Fiancee does sound better doesn't it?"
Frowning he climbed up the edge after her, "Friends with benefits? I thought you were my girlfriend," he said dusting his hands, wincing at the burn marks and cuts the vine had left in them.
"Was I now?"
Looking up quickly at the indifferent tone in her voice, he caught a moment of sadness as she stared up at the sky. He blinked, "Wait, does that—all this time you thought I was just fooling around?"
Shrugging Helga got up fixed her pony tail, walked over to a nearby rock and dropped on it with a heavy sigh. What a day.
Looking at her sad lonely form Arnold felt a strong urge to shake and hug her at the same time. She could be so...Spotting a small white flower nearby he plucked it and took it to were she sat. "Oh Helga...I sometimes forget that you are as thick as I am dense." At her indignant 'hey!' he shushed her and crouched down before her, "I won't apologize. You should know me better than to think I'd do something like that."
Turning her nose up she humphed at him, "I don't know football head. Up 'til a few months ago I also thought you were incapable of loosing your cool so completely." Leaning back on her arms she lowered her lashes at him, "Or being so rough. You always struck me as a sweet, bashful boy. Who knew."
Taking the flower from him she smelled it, "Clearly, me thinking you were fooling around is really all your fault."
He grinned up at her and placed his hands on either side of her hips "Helga, you know I always loose myself when I'm with you."
Gripping her hips he planted his knees on the ground and pulled her off the rock. With a gasp she was straddling him. Her face only inches from his.
"You know I've never been too bashful," lowering his face he kissed a trail up her neck, "specially around you."
Biting down behind her ear he pulled her more firmly against him digging his fingers into her jean covered thighs. "And you like it when I'm rough," he growled against her sensitive skin before moving to capture her lips in a heated kiss.
Moaning into his mouth she tangled her hands in his hair and rotated her hips to brush against his arousal. At his growl she repeated the motion, his hands helping to create a rhythm that had them panting in no time.
The feel of his hand creeping up her shirt made her come to her senses and with a strangled gasp she was off him. "Woah there football head!" Unsteadily she walked away from him taking a hold of a tree before her knees gave out.
Groaning miserably Arnold let his hands fall to his now Helga free lap and managed a strangled, "What's wrong?"
"What's wrong?!" Flustered she motioned around them, "We're in the middle of the jungle, we almost died! You are NOT seducing me in the middle of the jungle!"
"Why not? We're alone..." Whining he bowed his head and tried to take a few deep breaths.
"Are you out of your mind? We haven't taken a shower in days, I stink, and there are creepy monkeys and giant man eating cats around!" Shuddering she looked around as if expecting them to pop out. "Get up! We have to climb up this stupid hill and get back on track before the monkeys find us again."
"The monkeys aren't creepy Helga just curious about you, and we haven't come across a jaguar yet." A bit calmer now he got up and went to her, "And you don't stink. You are a bit salty though." Kissing her pink cheek he started for the hill.
"At least we know which way to go...all we need to do is follow the pile of broken branches back up." Looking up he followed the trail they had left from were they had stumbled down the hill and off the cliff. How the hell had he managed to grab both Helga and that vine before they rolled off that edge?
"Sorry about that." Looking back at her confused she nodded to the hill and rolled her left shoulder, "It's my fault we fell."
"It was an accident, you tripped." Shrugging he motioned to her shoulder "Does it hurt bad?"
"It's just sore, I'll be fine. You?"
He held up a red bruised hand "I'll survive, but I think it's for the best that we find the first aid kit and clean the cuts." With that he pulled her towards the broken trail. If they followed it he was sure they'd find their things lying around the area.
"Hey, you never answered my question."
"What question?" She asked distractedly as she bandaged his hand.
"If you'd marry me?"
Pausing she gave him a quick glance, "I did. I said we were too young." With that she turned back to finish tying off his bandage with a small knot. Smiling at her handy work she declared him done and bent to put the first aid kit away.
"That's not an answer Helga." He told her as he flexed his fingers to loosen the bandages a bit and get more mobility on his fingers.
"It's a fact." Getting back up she glared at him, "stop doing that, you'll loosen them too much and then I''ll have to tie them back again. For a third time!"
"Sorry." Lowering his hands he grinned sheepishly at her.
Rolling her eyes she turned to survey the clearing were they stood, "Should we camp here for the night or do you want to move on further?"
"Here should be fine, it'll be dark soon and we're already pretty far from the hill by now. Plus there's water close by."
"Perfect." Dropping her bags she stretched, groaning at her sore muscles. "I could really use a hot shower right now."
Coming up behind her he loosely wrapped his arms around her middle making her sigh contently and lean back against him.
"Say you'll marry me." She immediately stiffened against him.
"What has gotten into you now football head? Where is this coming from? Why are you being so insistent?"
Exasperated she tried to move away from him, but his arms tightened, so she ended up turning around to face him. "Do you even know how much of a commitment a marriage is?" Looking at him for a moment she brought her hands up to his face, "Is this because we haven't found them yet?"
He looked sadly at her for a long time before finally answering, "I am scared that we won't find them. That I've done all this, endangered your life for nothing..." Leaning against her hand he closed his eyes and took a deep breath before looking back at her. "But this isn't about that Helga."
"How long have you loved me?" Startled by that she tried to back out but again he pulled her in. "Since 4th grade? Longer?"
"I—I..." Flabbergasted she could only stare.
"I've loved you for just as long. I was just too stupid to realize it. But I've always loved you. It has always been you. It dawned on me months ago. Even when we were kids and I thought I liked Lila. I wasn't nearly as concerned, interested, or obsessed with her as I was with you. I didn't care to remember her favorite color. But I know you like purple. Did she have allergies? You do. Strawberries. And you really like the smell of peaches." Lifting his hands he loosened her hair and tangled his hands in it. "Your hair even smells like them."
"I know you're worried that I'm just infatuated with you. That I'll get tired and this will all burn out. " He gripped the back of her head, "It's not. I will never stop loving you Helga. I will never get tired of you, you will never stop fascinating me, arguing with you will always drive me crazy and I will always want to touch you, kiss you, be with you."
"I'm not playing with you Helga." Letting go of her head he took her hands and knelt down before her, "I know what marriage means. I know what I'm asking for." He griped her hands imploring her to understand, "Like I said this wasn't a spur of the moment thing. I'd been meaning to ask for a while, I was just waiting for the right time."
Snorting she raised an eyebrow at him, finally finding her voice, "And hanging from a vine was the right time?"
He beamed at her, "Seemed romantic at the time."
"We need to work on your definition of romantic."
"Think about it. When people ask how we became engaged, you can then tell them of our great adventure, about how heroic and dashing I was and how completely charmed you were by the whole thing."
"Hmm, that does sound like the beginning of a good romance novel." Pulling her right hand from his hold she lifted it to her shin as if seriously contemplating the idea.
"Helga." His tone made her look down, "Will you marry me?"
Hours later Helga lay on her side staring at a sleeping Arnold. Her vision a bit obscured by the darkness of the tent they shared. Frowning she moved to unzip a bit more of the flap at the back to let more moonlight in.
Looking back at him she smiled, much better. Shivering a bit she laid back beside him, pulling the blanket over her naked shoulder.
He loved her. Her smile broke into a giddy grin. Arnold loved her. Not able to contain herself she got up on one elbow and stretched her hand to run it across his chest, loving the feel of his smooth skin underneath her palm. 'I love you.' Her hand trailed to his shoulders. 'I want you.' She moved to his neck. 'Only you,' and around his chin. 'Helga', she was heading to his ear when his hand caught hers and lifted it up to his lips. Blinking, she looked up to find his sleepy eyes on her.
"Arnold?" She whispered.
"Hmm?" Yawning he pulled on her hand till she was lying on his chest, his other hand wrapping around her.
She waited until he was looking back at her, "I love you too."
He grinned up at her, his big goofy Arnold grin. Giggling she leaned down and kissed him.
Well. This story sure got out of hand. It was just supposed to be a simple paragraph or two. Oh well, can't say I'm not happy with it.
Hope you all like. Please review. 3