A Daria Fanfiction
She's so delicate like this.
Lying there. So quiet. Calm. At peace. She's resting right now; she needs it, what with all that's been going on, and the aftermath.
I think that my revelation to her tired her out the most. Of course, it did quite a number on me, too. What got said isn't the kind of thing that any person just shrugs off. But there's more to say - I'm nowhere near finished yet, and I don't think she is, either. That's cool; we're alone here, totally alone - I don't know if people are searching for us or not, but where we are, there's all the time in the world. I don't come here often (so nobody would follow), and I've never taken anyone up here with me (so nobody would squeal). Until now. Until her. She's special - no, not good enough. She's spectacular! Even that's not close, but it'll have to do - it's the best I can do, anyway. She'll appreciate the effort, I know she will. Right now, I want to go to her, take one of her precious hands in both of mine, wake her up, and tell her I've found such a wonderful word to describe her - but she can't be disturbed. She's resting, so peaceful...it would be a crime to wake her up.
Strange. I look at her resting there, and the thing is, the suddenness of it all hits me; this wouldn't have happened (before), maybe not even last week. We've taken such strides together, she and I, and so quickly. Such a long time in coming; but I am so grateful that the time has finally come. I wouldn't be able to tell now, when I first realised what it was that I felt; I mean, does anyone remember the first time that they opened their eyes? No; all that sticks around is the feeling of the wonderful light, so bright it hurts but it feels so good, as it bathes you in joy. All I remember is the joy, when I looked at her, and my eyes opened, really opened. I think my heart might even have stopped. Just for a beat or two. We were at her house, talking about, something, (I have no clue what now), and when I looked into her eyes as she walked into the room, it hit me - hard. Then life started again, and the moment passed. We talked some more, maybe watched some TV, and I went home. Everything back to normal, right? Like hell. No such thing, not in our lives. No going back now. That's one sure thing I know out of all of this - there is no way to undo what's happened. And that scares me, you know? Things could get so ugly over this, so many people could get the wrong idea...I look at her, that glorious face, those eyes, even if they're hidden right now, and a sense of peace comes over me. We'll get through this, she and I; we've faced tough situations before, after all; she in her way, and I in mine. And we survived those. This won't be any different - I can feel it. She'll guide me through.
I didn't really want to, but I had to go back into town. Lawndale is such a hole; I walked around, and I wondered how I ever thought it could be home. I'd never really liked it all that much, and now that I knew my real feelings, what little liking I had was gone. If I didn't need supplies (and some money), this place would be a spot on a rear-view mirror, I swear. Small town, small minds, small people - no wonder this burg's biggest attraction is a giant piece of fruit.
They were looking at me the entire time, too. At the cash machine, in the parking lot, all around the supermarket...so many pairs of eyes. Prying eyes. Nosy eyes. Hateful eyes. Didn't matter what colour they were, they were all the same: they followed me, and they made me feel uneasy - like I was dirty or something. I had some spot, some stain, only I couldn't see it. It was creepy, like they could see through me, even though I was in disguise, so I knew nobody could tell it was me. But I did it, 'cause she needed it.
I'd do a lot of creepy stuff for her. I'd do a lot of stuff for her, period. I'm devoted to her, though not on a level that Joey, Jeffy, and what's-his-name (Jameel?) show for Quinn. That's 'stupid' devotion; she leads them around like dogs on a leash, but they still beg for treats. Mine is 'smart' - she's my world, and I'd do anything, but I'd at least think about some of the stuff I'm asked to do first! If she didn't mind, of course.
It seems like that's the way it's always been with her, really; she takes the lead, and I follow. At first I was kinda resentful - what the hell did she know that was so special anyway? I mean, sure, she could handle people, situations, so well...like it was so easy for her - too easy, almost. So what was so cool about that? Dumb questions, really, and over time, I got to see how wrong I was to think that way.
I think she's starting to move...no, just the wind in her hair. I carefully brush it back into place. I love the way her hair moves when she walks, almost like a living thing. How she does it I don't know, but I love it all the same. I wish my hair was like it, I've gone looking for dye, rollers, whatever, to change it; I just can't do it - it would've been blasphemy, not flattery, if I'd tried. Plus, it would've given away how I really felt before I was ready to tell her - I needed it to be just right when I did, or else I'd lose the moment forever.
I thought about that moment for so long, played it out over and over in my head, so often that I almost didn't do it for real; the fantasy became my own romantic movie, a way of keeping me going when things seemed like they were never going to happen, or a pick-me-up at the end of a hard day. I was content to plan it out, all the possibilities...doing it for real was just too scary - what if she said no? What if she called the cops? If she walked away, told the whole school, threatened to sue, started hitting me - I have to calm down. She'll wake up soon, and she'll be cranky. And I love her, but she's not the nicest person when she's cranky - to be honest, she can be a real bitch. I'll let her sleep for a little while longer, but not too long - I think I heard sirens a minute ago. It wouldn't look good if she was still asleep when the cops showed up; someone would get the wrong idea. And that's the last thing I want. That's why it took me so long to get to this point.
All those times in the halls, going into or coming out of classes, at lunch...all those were chances, too; ones that I let slip. She was there, so often like that, and what did I do? I hid; behind walls, doors, people, whatever was around. Hell, I even once got trapped in a freakn' stall in the bathroom! It was pathetic, what I did to avoid her - just the fear taking control again. I let that crap, fear, self-doubt, whatever, kick me around for way too damn long; with her, and with other stuff, too. It was always easier to believe I couldn't and walk away, than to try and be humiliated. That's why I 'planned' it for so long; I'd almost get the nerve to do it, after I'd worked it through in my head, but some weaselly little doubt would pop up, and it'd be back to the damn drawing board again.
Then he showed up. That bastard took her away from me, didn't even ask! Suddenly, she didn't have any time for anyone - the two of them were friggn' glued together, it seemed like. Now it was impossible to talk to her - I mean, how the hell do you bare your soul to the one you love with some guy around all the damn time? Huh? Pull a Quinn, and get them to keep fetching you sodas and whatever? You'd end up getting diabetes in no time flat.
Things were getting out of control. So I made a decision. I had to tell her; no more screwing around, delaying things. I'd tell her the truth, and then she'd see, she'd see that he could never care for her, look after or love her, the way I knew I could. And she'd leave him.
I was kinda harder than I thought; Lawndale High may just be a high school, but it seems to get about a hundred times bigger when you're looking for somebody. At least, when I'm looking for somebody. Whatever. Anyhow, it took longer than I thought to find her. We're destined to be together, really, it's just that...
Now don't laugh.
It's just that I don't know that much about her, the places she goes and stuff. I watch her, of course, but sometimes the distance between us is pretty big. And maybe some of the times where she's helped me out have been like that too, but c'mon, people take advice and stuff from TV all the time, and that's normal, right? So we never really talked all that much, never hung out really; my feelings for her are real, and anybody that thinks I'm faking it, well, they can go straight to hell.
So I eventually caught up with her, after what felt like a million years. She was at her locker - I know where that is and all, but I was so nervous about this, I kinda took the long way 'round. She was talking to someone, and just for a second I was tempted to leave. Then I caught was she was saying.
She and this guy were going on a date, but not just any kind of date; he was gonna take her to C'est La Ville, the most romantic restaurant in this whole stupid town. Then, they were gonna go and stargaze, for cryn' out loud! Just the two of them, alone together...
No. This could NOT happen. I've been on dates like that, and I know what happens at the end of them - and if it did, she might never listen to me. And if that happened, I might as well be dead, 'cause that's how I'd feel.
She'd be proud of the planning I put in with so little time; I mean, it took a little time to get over the shock, but after that, I was thinking like I never had before. I don't remember how I got home, but when I did the plan was set. I'd get her to see how wrong that guy was for her; he'd never be this dedicated for someone he cared for, and when she heard how real my feelings were, she'd drop him in a second. I'd meet up with them after dinner; I didn't want to make a scene at C'est La Ville - we might want to go there sometime. Thankfully, Mom and Dad don't know I can drive; it's not like they ever use the station wagon that much anyway, and who would think to keep an eye on a car like that when you're on a hot date? Sandi was right; driving really is a useful social skill.
They took a long time in the restaurant; in a way, I'm glad I didn't have a clear view of them - I'm sure he was pawing at her the whole time. Of course, not seeing them meant I ended up imagining stuff like that ANYWAY...I was so glad when they finally came out again.
I've been to the place they went before, lots of times, but it felt like a much longer trip this time 'round. I was so nervous (and excited, too) I nearly lost them. When we got there, I was stuck for a second; I'd been thinking so much about what I was gonna say to her when we got face to face, I'd forgotten how I'd get the scene to start. I didn't want to hurt anyone, I mean, I can't fight worth for anything anyway. My words were my only hope - I would just have to confront her with them, and hope she listened to them. I practiced what I was gonna say and I walked over to where I'd seen them settle down to 'watch the stars': "I never told you this before, but..." - nah; "We have to talk..." - uh-uh; "I love you..." - God no. I mean, where do you go from there?
That's how it happened - my walking into them, I mean. I was concentrating so much on what I was gonna say, I practically walked right over them! So of course they're gonna look surprised - if it was me, I know I would. I blame myself for the hand up her shirt - that was my fault, for not confessing to her earlier, for letting her see this guy, and for waiting for so damn long before I got out of the damn car. That was what started it - when I saw that, it was like my brain went out the window; all the words I'd practiced just went "poof!". I just stood there for a second, in shock I think. Then there was the look on his face, after the surprise wore off - he was angry. At me! Of all the nerve, actually daring to get mad at me for interrupting something that she wasn't even enjoying anyway! And the words he used...
I didn't mean to react that way, but I couldn't just take that crap lying down. I started throwing words back at him; what did he know about rudeness, about lack of consideration - the bastard had taken her away, the one person in this whole screwed-up world I loved -
I'd said it. In the middle of a screaming fight with some guy, I'd said it.
For a moment, it was so quiet you could hear the crickets. All thought, all everything, stopped; I looked at her face, for a sign, a clue, for anything. He made her do it; I'm sure of it. He made a stupid face behind my back, or gave me bunny ears or stuck out his tongue...She never would have, if he hadn't made her do it. I don't care if she started before him, it was his fault! And I always thought it was supposed to be good for you.
After...well, it's still mostly a blur. I guess I should be sorry about it - I wasn't myself, after all, and I didn't mean to hit him, even if the bastard deserved it. I just went a little - my feelings were in control, not me, she knows that. I would never raise a finger against her most of the time, I just...I was angry, I guess. And then it just spiralled... And she...she looked so scared - didn't she know I could never...and the scream...
I close my eyes, and I can still hear it, still see the look on her face. But I had to do it; we're meant to be together, I know it. We'll get over this hurdle, and be happy. She'll thank me for it when she wakes up.
And so here we are; taking a break before Round 2, I guess you could say. It's been almost a day and a half since the argument. We're both really tired - I want to sleep too, but if I did, she'd be disturbed and then she'd be cranky, and she won't listen and we'll just get tired out being mad at each other. I can't go through that again; so I let her rest, and I look after her, waiting...
Don't worry Daria; I may be a lot of things, but there's one I know I'm not.
Stacy Rowe is never disloyal.
This was initially submitted to "Iron Chef: Mike's Top Ten, 15/09/03, in answer to point #5 of "The Top Ten Things that never happen in Daria fanfics"; "5: A female character reveals herself to be a lesbian and confesses her love to the object of her desire, who reacts with disgust and vehement rejection." I'd written the story some time before, but hadn't had the confidence to post it; so my first thanks is to Mike Yamiolkoski for coming up with the IC challenge, and giving me a much-needed kick in the a$$. Also, thanks to everyone who read it and liked it at the PPMB, and to CB, my beta-reader on this - thanks for finding that horrific spelling mistake. :P