Title: you might enjoy some madness for a while (1/1)
Summary: Beca really isn't into big, romantic gestures. Beca/Jesse, set post-movie.
Rating: PG-13, for language
Notes: This is…just a lot of cheese, really. I kind of hate myself for writing this hahaha. Fluff is definitely not something I write often. The things these two idiots have done to me! Oh, well. (Also there are a shitload of movie references in this, so please refer to the end of the fic if you want to know where each one is from.) Er, enjoy?
Ever since she came to Barden, sometimes Beca's been thinking moviecation nights really are the bane of her existence.
Okay, so maybe the part where she's snuggling next to Jesse on her bed (or his, it doesn't really matter) with the skin of her calves brushing against his, her head resting comfortably on his chest, isn't all that bad. It's definitely not her favorite part, though, no matter how much Jesse goes around telling the other Bellas as much. (When Chloe and Fat Amy start badgering her about how far she and Jesse have gone, you know, physically, Beca swears Jesse is such a pain in the ass sometimes, no matter how sweet or adorable or kind of cute, if she allows herself to admit that last bit out loud to him and feed his large ego).
But the actual watching the movies part? Yeah, Beca could do without those. Especially because Jesse absolutely loves and believes in romantic comedies in a way that's almost sickening.
Beca is a cynical, mocking human being, okay? With a pocketful of sarcastic quips for any and every occasion and a total hatred for fun things, if Jesse is anything to go by. She hates anything sugary sweet and sappy and cheesy. She hates how in Jesse's movies she can already predict that the girl always has to cry over the guy (and she totally never did that, nope), or how they always, always have a happy ending. Beca doesn't believe in that kind of bullshit, because that kind of stuff doesn't happen in real life, she knows this for certain.
So she kind of hates how, in the middle of the victory party the Bellas are throwing, Chloe pretty much refutes this by making a statement like, "You and Jesse make such a cute couple. And finally, I'd like to add."
She kind of grimaces. Sure, she's just kissed Jesse in front of everybody at Lincoln Center last weekend (she's pretty sure the camera was trained on them for like a second or two while she was licking into his mouth, which – yeah, she could pretty much die from embarrassment now), and, okay, she's sung him his favorite song from possibly his favorite movie ever, but – yeah, no, people can't just say stuff like that to her and expect her to go with it. "Dude, no. We're not a cute anything."
Chloe scoffs. "Yeah, right."
"Right." Chloe nods, spilling her drink a little. "Because random co-workers have eye sex in front of everybody for months and then suck each other's tongues after one of them serenades the other in public. Yup, that's totally platonic."
"Yeah, I'm not talking to you right now."
"Seriously, Beca." Chloe actually rolls her eyes at her; Beca didn't know Chloe even had it in her to do that. "If this is anything like those movies you told me Jesse loves, then you two just had your big, romantic scene at the ending. Totally cliché but totally adorable."
That's when Beca realizes it: she and Jesse are like something out of Say Anything with her romantic gesture and the public make out and the 'happy ending'. And it freaks her out to death.
Before she can protest, Jesse dances his way over to where they're sitting on top of the piano, looking like a total idiot who couldn't care less about what other people think of his moronic antics ("I like to call them quirks," he's told her). Chloe smirks behind her cup of booze and slinks away very un-stealthily, muttering, "Platonic, my ass," as she goes, and Beca almost wants to flip her off.
But Jesse's beside her now, throwing an arm around her shoulders and pressing his lips to her temple, and yeah, okay, she may or may not melt into a puddle right then and there.
"Keep up that surly expression right now, Beca," Jesse laughs as he hands her a cup filled with questionable-looking liquid, "and people may actually think you're enjoying this party."
"People think we're a couple out of a movie!" she complains with a frown as he jumps on the piano beside her, his arm brushing against hers, making her heart flutter. She kind of hates how it always does that now, even with the stupidest little things he does. "Well, Chloe does, but still."
"You just gave me the biggest compliment I've ever gotten," Jesse says, then grins at the look on her face. "Okay, what is wrong about that statement? Let's not forget that you did sing to me in front of an entire audience and then kissed me – not complaining, just making a point – in front of said audience and maybe even a camera. I may or may not know this because my parents may or may not have seen said footage."
"Oh, god." She downs her cup in one gulp and slaps his arm. "This is all your fault! I do one 'romantic' gesture – which is something I never even wanted to do in the first place – and suddenly I'm a 'romantic' ball of cheese, which is the grossest thing ever. What is happening to me?"
"You totally love the movies I make you watch," Jesse says, smirking down at her in a way that's almost annoying if it isn't so endearing. "You totally love all those romantic comedies. You totally did make a big, romantic gesture. We totally are a couple from a movie!"
Beca's eyes widen in panic, because Jesse gets that look on his face when he's talking about movies, and she can see it, she can see the wheels turning in his head, and she already knows what he's going to say even before he says it.
"Oh my god, don't even think about it, Jesse–"
"I totally need to make my own romantic gesture, Beca!" He has this crazy look in his eyes and he's grinning down at the horrified look on her face. "I need to step up my game! I need to wow you and show the world that you're my girl and how much I–"
She knows he's not going to shut up anytime soon, so she does the only thing she's discovered that can shut Jesse up effectively: she leans up to kiss him, hating how her heart does that thing again, every single time they do this. And maybe her mind goes blissfully blank, because damn this nerd can kiss, and he's just called her "his girl." When Chloe comes back and starts going on about their relationship, about how "adorable" they are, about how Beca's face is totally as red as a fire truck ("I wouldn't go that far, Chloe," Jesse says. "Maybe just a tomato.") Beca doesn't even care.
She does flip her off behind Jesse's back, though, because come on, what kind of friend is she supposed to be?
There are only two weeks of school left, and she's super swamped with finals, and papers her professors think is fun to assign all at the same time, and hanging out with the Bellas because Aubrey and Chloe insist upon it because "we're graduating, aca-bitches, and we need to bond as much as possible." Okay, and maybe they're dorks and weirdos who like to sing drunkenly in karaoke bars and talk about girly shit Beca doesn't know how to traverse, and they attach 'aca-' to pretty much everything, but they're her friends, and she likes that she has a reason to stay at Barden now, despite everything.
She almost forgets what Jesse's said to her at last week's party, which is quite possibly the biggest mistake she could ever make.
She's having dinner with the Bellas at this café a few minutes away from campus when her phone buzzes in her pocket.
"Look outside," goes the text.
She frowns; what the hell is Jesse talking about? So she looks, and – okay, now she can pretty much die from embarrassment.
Because Jesse is standing there, a huge grin on his stupid face, with a freaking boom box and a thick stack of poster boards in his arms. She makes a small noise, and ignores everyone's confused looks as she flies out the door.
"Jesse!" she almost whines, and damn, it is hot out here tonight. "What the fuck? Don't do this, I swear to god."
But Jesse just grins, and the music from his boom box starts playing into the night, and he holds up his placards for her to read, one by one. And she knows people are starting to stare, she knows the guests inside the café are starting to stand up to see what's going on, and she knows that the Bellas are freaking pressing their noses against the glass (Fat Amy's actually licking it, oh my god, kill her now), but she stares at Jesse, and his tangled, messy hair, and his flushed face and his genuine, sincere eyes and she kind of hates herself for maybe kind of liking this.
You are the most sullen, sarcastic – "alternative" ( but personally I think it's just "goth") – "Does this have a point?" – dry-humored girl I've ever met – and the ear spike scares the hell out of me sometimes – but for now let me just say – without hope or agenda – since it's, you know, a random Wednesday evening – (and on Wednesday evenings you tell the truth) – to me, you are perfect.
Their unwanted audience actually "awws" out loud (actually makes the freaking sound, what even; this isn't a movie), and the Bellas are making goofy, kissy faces at her through the glass (with Fat Amy trying to dry hump the air), and Beca knows her face is fucking red as hell; but Jesse's putting down his placards and tightening her scarf around her neck, her skin tingling when it touches his. He smiles down at her, wraps his arms around her waist and brushes a stray hair away from her face.
"You'll totally kill me in the morning, won't you?" he says, still grinning that stupid grin down at her.
She tries not to smile, but it's a bit hard, with the way he's looking at her right now, so she just shoves at his chest. "Maybe after lunch."
"I rose to the challenge, Beca," he says. He looks like he doesn't give a shit in the world that there are still people ogling at them like they're zoo animals or something, just keeps smiling down at her with a glint in his eyes. "You made your big, romantic movie gesture, so I'm making mine. You like?"
"There was no challenge," she protests, scrunching up her nose, which he laughs at and pinches. "And I've never hated rom-coms more than I do now and I am making it my personal mission to stop you from watching any more of them. And yeah, this totally was the stuff of my wet dreams about you."
"I – what?" His grip on her waist loosens a little.
"Yeah, I keep dreaming about drowning you in some lake."
He laughs out loud in her face, then leans down to cup her chin and press his lips to hers; and she forgets everything, forgets their freaking audience and forgets that some cheesy ballad is still freaking playing in the background, and she tightens her hold around his neck and kisses him back.
"Just so you know," she says against his lips, almost wanting to laugh at the dazed look on his face, "I'm so getting back at you for this."
It becomes sort of a thing between them.
Beca's fed up with the teasing and the kissy noises the Bellas keep making when they're together (Aubrey's tsk-ing about being Trebleboned is actually a more welcome reaction, if she's honest), but she doesn't tell anyone that she's downloaded the song Jesse played on his boom box and that his placards are tucked away beneath her mattress, because yeah, Beca still cares about her image, though a bit of that has gone away thanks to Jesse.
She knows Jessica is something of a movie buff who shares a few classes with Jesse, so Beca goes to her, makes her swear not to tell anybody what she's asking or she will do something drastic, like diss Taylor Swift on her radio show.
So Jessica pulls out a few DVDs, skips to a few scenes in a couple of movies, and Beca actually takes notes before she's leaving to run to the nearest school supply store.
She's fucking exhausted by the time she's done with no help whatsoever from anyone (because for real, the Bellas will never let her live this down), but she imagines the look on Jesse's face and smiles into her pillow when she texts him the first message: "Do you want to meet?"
He's panting hard by the time they meet up at the back of the campus art museum four hours later, clutching a tattered old book and brushing his sweat away with the sleeve of his hoodie.
"You are quite possibly the most evil person I've ever met," he says, stopping a foot in front of her, breathing heavily. "You made me – run all over campus – even to the girls' bathroom – even to the dark, scary, office of Dean Thomas that I'm fully convinced houses dead bodies underneath the floorboards – for this." And he shakes the old book in front of her face.
"How you said all that while out of breath is beyond me," she says with a grin. "And I was channeling Amélie! I can't believe you didn't appreciate it, you ungrateful bastard. I sat through two hours of a fucking French movie for you."
"Oh my god, why didn't I pick up on that sooner? Amélie. Awesome." He laughs alternately with his deep breathing, and Beca reaches out a hand to brush his sweaty bangs away from his forehead, unable to keep the smile off her face. "You're an evil genius, I tell you. Beautiful, but evil."
"Page 51?" She smiles sweetly and drops a quick kiss on his cheek.
He almost starts crying when he opens the book and finds the folded vintage The Empire Strikes Back movie poster she got for him online, she swears to god.
He fires back not two days later with a box of "flours." ("Clever," she quips, to which he replies, "Thank you, Stranger Than Fiction.") She bounces back by putting orange Tic-Tacs in his mailbox the way Juno did for Michael Cera in that weird teen pregnancy movie. He embarrasses her even further by hijacking someone's microphone (probably from those hyper-cheerful orientation people from their first day of school) and bursting into Can't Take My Eyes Off Of You Heath Ledger-style in the middle of the courtyard while she's sitting on the grass, looking horrified…except he does it in a totally dorky, exaggerated, yet charming way that only he can pull off. She retaliates by reciting him the poem from 10 Things I Hate About You in the middle of his English Lit class before she's unceremoniously told to leave by the amused professor, who's apparently friends with her dad, and yeah, that's a totally different element she hasn't considered beforehand.
"What the hell are you two doing?" Chloe says when she catches Jesse climbing into the window of Beca's dorm, having gone up the fire escape.
Beca's currently trying to help him up, laughing like an idiot. "Fuck – your ass is too heavy to lift through this window," she says, trying to pull on Jesse's arms while he claws at her waist. "Looks like you'll have to go back down and use the stairs like a normal person. Idiot."
"I risked my life for this, Beca!" Jesse says, finally managing to pull his legs through the window while Beca falls to the floor on her butt, breathless from laughter. "I'm being Richard Gere here, which is – come on, Richard Gere."
Chloe perches herself on the bed and watches them with an amused expression. "What movie is this supposed to be from?"
"Pretty Woman," Beca says automatically, before clapping a hand over her mouth. "Shit."
Jesse grins widely, pulling at Beca's hair. Beca thinks nothing is more embarrassing right now, not even when Jesse discovered she's saved a sleepy voicemail he once left her after they made out at the ICCAs. "Beca Mitchell," he crows, slapping his thigh for effect. "I am impressed and astounded and flabbergasted, all at once. I've nothing more to teach you."
"Stop embarrassing me in front of Chloe," she grumbles, punching him on the arm.
"I think you're doing that all by yourself, Beca," Chloe says, smirking. Jesse laughs while Beca groans, because she's so never gonna hear the end of this.
"Beca loves Pretty Woman," Jesse announces to the room. "I thought I'd never see the day." Beca tries to smother him with a pillow.
"Do you really have to keep doing all these romantic comedy movie stuff?" Chloe asks. "You two have reached a whole new level of nauseatingly cute, and that's coming from me."
"Oh my god." Beca freezes. "We are. Oh my god. Jesse."
"But we haven't even scratched the surface of rom-coms, Beca!"
"No. No. Dude. I'm, I dunno, putting my foot down or some shit. We're not doing this anymore." She shudders, remembering all the crap they've been doing for the past week, remembers how her dad had smirked at her when he asked her about her little presentation in Jesse's class.
"But Becaaaa." He's freaking tugging on her shirt sleeve now, trying to pass off a puppy-dog-eyes look and failing spectacularly.
"No." She shoves him until he's falling backwards on the bed, Chloe laughing at the look on her face. "I fucking hate you for doing this to me."
She meets him at their spot on the quad while he's all stretched out on a checkered blanket, laptop open to some movie she's already refusing to watch from six feet away, with a candle and juice pouch ready. He smiles when he sees her, his face lighting up in a way that tugs at Beca's heartstrings. She figures this is something that won't end any time soon, this feeling in her chest, and she realizes she doesn't mind at all.
"Hey, Becaw," he greets her, then produces a huge bouquet of bright yellow daffodils seemingly out of nowhere. "For you."
"Really, we're this couple now?" she says as she sits beside him and takes it. "We're doing the whole flowers and chocolates and candles and shit?"
"We've done way worse," he replies with a laugh. "And besides, I'm more interested in the way you referred to us as a couple."
"Okay, we're never mentioning that again." She punches him on the arm. "Is this some random gesture or is it from another movie?"
"Big Fish," he says matter-of-factly. "I'm Ewan McGregor this time. Another one of those people I'm totally way more attractive than, of course. You agree, yeah?"
She chooses to ignore that comment, even though she thinks he's way cuter when he gets like this, but there's no way she's giving him that kind of satisfaction. "I thought we were done with this rom-com bullshit."
"I love your way with words, Beca." He grins when she sticks her tongue out at him. "And also, this is the last time, I swear. I saw the flowers and couldn't resist. I would've planted an entire garden, too, you know, the way my good pal Ewan actually did in the movie, but you know, time constraints. And your hatred for anything colorful and bright as evidenced by your dark makeup and scary ear spike won't be able to handle more than twelve flowers at once."
"That is true."
"I got to thinking, though." He taps his chin, looking thoughtful. Beca stares at him, amused, as she brings to bouquet to her nose and pretends she doesn't like any of this at all when she really, surprisingly does. "I totally didn't get to shoplift with you Audrey Hepburn-style, or blast music from a boom box from beneath your window, or take you on a bus ride date ala Josh Harnett. Or, oh! You know, buying you a piano, or, like, drawing you Titanic style…"
"Oh my god," she says, because she knows he can go on and on and on about this and not get tired, and she's maybe actually afraid he's totally going to push through each and every one of those ideas even though he's lost her at Josh Harnett. So she does what a girl like her does in desperate situations, and tackles him onto his back with a kiss.
She licks up hard into his mouth, and he moans, his hands automatically fisting in her hair. She pulls away, feeling smug as he stares up at her, looking stunned. She's feeling pretty out of breath herself, and she tucks her now-messy hair behind her ears and smiles down at him.
"I could never understand the workings of the mind of an evil genius," he mumbles, settling his hands on her waist. She laughs, then removes one of her earrings, takes his hand and presses it there. He glances down at it, then back up at her, a grin spreading across his face so wide she automatically laughs again.
"You're perfect," he says, looking at her like she's the only girl in the world, and maybe for him she kind of is. "Even though this moment right here could have used some background music from Simple Minds, you know. But thanks for the ear spike."
She smiles and punches his chest lightly before plopping down on the blanket beside him and curling her tiny body next to his. "You are such a weirdo."
She's gonna maybe have to confiscate Jesse's rom-coms for a while, because seriously – they're poisoning his brain. But she'll tell him that another day.
I'm not sure if they sounded in character, but I'm trying; these two are hard to write!
Film: Say Anything (1989); Love, Actually (2003); Amélie (2001); The Empire Strikes Back (Star Wars Episode V) (1980); Stranger Than Fiction (2006); Juno (2007); 10 Things I Hate About You (1999); Pretty Woman (1990); Big Fish (2003); Breakfast at Tiffany's (1961); The Breakfast Club (1985); 40 Days and 40 Nights (2002); Once (2007); Titanic (1997)
Title from You May Be Right by Billy Joel