Chapter 1: August I.
"Are you sure that's going to fit there?"
"I mean, we got it in the door so it has to fit."
"Yeah but, what if we turn it-"
"I don't think angling it is a good idea because then the tv-"
"Oh. Yeah. Yeah, you're right."
Danny and Carmilla turn from staring at the empty space where their couch will go to find Danny's father, Derek, still holding the couch.
"Oh! Sorry, dad!" Danny exclaims, moving to help him with it.
Carmilla directs them over to where they decided the couch should go and stands back as Danny and her father slide it into place.
"There. How's that?" He asks, adjusting his glasses.
Danny looks over at Carmilla and smiles.
"Perfect." They both say in unison.
"I still don't understand why you wanted to bring this old thing." Derek says, gesturing to the dinosaur rug he's carrying.
"Sentimental reasons." Danny replies, grinning.
"And you're okay with this?" He asks, looking back at Carmilla.
"Oh yeah." She says, peeking around the stack of boxes she's carrying.
He hums to himself and continues to follow Danny up the stairs.
"Where do these boxes go?" Beatrice asks, gesturing to the two cardboard boxes sitting in the floor.
"Well, they have the word 'bedroom' written on them." Derek replies, grinning. Beatrice punches his arm.
"Was I talking to you?"
"I'll get them." Carmilla says, trying to hold in her laugh.
She grabs one of the boxes and ducks into the bedroom. Danny's kneeling on their bed trying to hang the sailboat painting above it.
"It's a little crooked." Carmilla jokes, setting the box down.
"Fuck." Danny mutters.
"Babe, I'm kidding." Carmilla says, walking over and crawling onto the bed behind Danny. "It looks fine."
"You sure?" Danny asks, not taking her eyes off the painting.
Carmilla leans forward and drapes her arms over Danny's shoulders before kissing her cheek.
"Good. It's my favorite so I want it to be perfect." Danny says.
"Your favorite, huh?" Carmilla teases, squeezing her.
"A painting of my favorite book done by my girlfriend to tell me she loves me? Yeah, it's definitely my favorite." Danny replies, turning to look at Carmilla.
"You're such a sap." Carmilla teases, lightly shoving at Danny's head.
"You love it." Danny replies, grinning.
"I love you so I guess I'm stuck with the sappiness." Carmilla says, grinning back.
Danny leans in and kisses her over and over, stopping only when she hears a loud thud and her mother swearing in Spanish.
"Are you sure you two are going to be okay tonight? You don't need us to stay?" Beatrice asks, leaning against the side of the couch.
"No, ma, we'll be fine." Danny replies.
"We're all settled." Carmilla says.
"But are you sure you don't need us to help you finish unpacking?" Beatrice asks.
"Honey, I'm sure they don't need help opening boxes." Derek says, shaking his head. "Plus, we need to leave now. We've got a long drive back home."
"We'll be okay, I promise." Danny assures her.
"Come here, you." Beatrice says, reaching for Danny's face and gently tugging her down so she can kiss her on both cheeks.
Danny pulls her into a hug and tries to ignore the sudden wave of emotion washing over her. This was really happening. She and Carmilla were really in Washington DC. Hours away from home and their friends. Hours away from her parents. She tightens her grip.
"Te quiero." Beatrice whispers as Danny finally lets go.
"Te quiero." Danny repeats.
"And you!" Beatrice exclaims, pointing over at Carmilla who had been slowly backing toward the hallway. She freezes.
Beatrice walks over and pulls Carmilla into a hug. She whispers something in her ear and Carmilla nods. She pulls away and steps back, obviously holding back tears.
"Well! Let's go then!" She exclaims, looking over at Derek.
"Bye, Cadet." He says, pulling Danny into a bear hug.
"Dad, ow!" She protests as his glasses press into her jaw.
He pulls back laughing and looks over at Carmilla, who's still awkwardly hovering near the hallway.
"Do you want a hug too? Or a high five? Fist bump, maybe?" He teases as Carmilla smiles.
She walks over and holds her arms out. He tugs her into a bear hug too.
"Watch the hair!" She jokes as they pull apart.
"We'll see you guys at Thanksgiving." Danny promises as Derek gets his keys out of his pocket.
"You'd better or I'm coming up here and dragging you both home by your ears." Beatrice says, pointing at them.
Danny looks over at Carmilla.
"She's serious about that, by the way." Danny says.
"Bye girls, love you both!" Derek calls over his shoulder as he opens the door.
Beatrice waves at them, making Danny laugh. She closes the door behind her and the apartment is silent.
Danny stands there staring at the closed door for a few moments. She feels Carmilla's hand slide into hers.
"You okay?" Carmilla whispers.
Danny looks over at her.
"Yeah. Yeah, I'm good."
"Does this feel weird to you?"
Danny rolls over in Carmilla's arms. She can barely make out her face in their dark bedroom.
"Not this, obviously." Carmilla says, gesturing between them, "but THIS?" She gestures to the bedroom.
"A little." Danny admits. "But like, in a good way."
"Yeah, I just don't feel like an adult and yet suddenly I'm living in an apartment with my girlfriend in a different city." Carmilla says.
"Well, you turn nineteen in like...two days." Danny teases. Carmilla rolls her eyes.
"You know what I mean."
"I do. We'll be okay, though."
"We will. It's everything around us I'm worried about." Carmilla admits.
Danny leans down and kisses her gently.
"I get it."
"I love you, you know." Carmilla whispers.
"I know. I love you too."
"Are you sure we're going the right way?"
"The map said to go to 4th Street and then make a left on Century."
"What street are we on right now?"
"4th Street NW."
"And do we need to be on 4th Street NW or some other directional variation?"
"It doesn't specify."
Carmilla throws her hands in the air and growls.
"Don't you think that would be pertinent information?" She asks, staring up at the sky.
"It's not my fault." Danny argues.
"No, I know that." Carmilla says, looking back over at her and sighing.
Danny looks back down at her phone.
"According to the little purple-"
"-blue dot we're going in the right direction."
"We can't even find the fucking grocery store." Carmilla mutters under her breath.
Danny drapes her arm over Carmilla's shoulders and tugs her into her side.
"It's our first full day here. Give it a week or two and we'll know where everything is." She reasons.
"Of course I am."
Carmilla looks over at her and narrows her eyes.
"That's my line."
"Usually, but I'm borrowing it this time." Danny jokes. "Come on, lets get some responsible adult groceries."
Danny carefully carries the tray of waffles down the hall and into the bedroom. Carmilla's still asleep, curled up on Danny's side of the bed and clutching Danny's pillow. Danny clears her throat and starts humming 'Happy Birthday' loudly from the doorway. Carmilla jerks awake.
"Wha?" She mumbles sleepily.
Danny hums louder and slowly walks forward with the tray. Carmilla catches sight of the plates of waffles, one of which has a lit candle stuck in it, and laughs.
"You're ridiculous." She says, shaking her head and yawning. "What time is it?"
Danny finishes humming with a flourish and sits down next to Carmilla on the bed.
"Just after nine."
Carmilla stares at the waffles for a moment.
"I guess I can forgive you for waking me up before noon."
Danny laughs and nudges her arm with the tray.
"Make a wish before your candle melts all the butter."
Carmilla quirks an eyebrow at her before leaning over and swiftly blowing out the candle.
"What'd you wish for?" Danny asks. Carmilla shakes her head as she grabs her plate of waffles off of the tray.
"I'm not supposed to tell or it won't come true."
Danny grins and hands her a fork.
They eat their waffles in silence, Danny leaned back against Carmilla's blanket covered legs and Carmilla propped up against the headboard. When they're finished, Danny practically leaps off the bed.
"I have your present!"
"Aw, baby, you didn't have to-"
"Oh please, yes I did." Danny interrupts, dropping down to her hands and knees and reaching under the bed.
Carmilla scrambles to set her plate back down on the tray and then over to the other side of the bed. She leans over, smirking to herself at the spectacular view of Danny's ass, before she hears a muffled "aha!"
Danny slides back out gripping her suitcase.
"You taking me on a trip, Beanpole?"
Danny rolls her eyes and starts to unzip her suitcase.
"I had to hide it in here while you were helping dad with the cable."
She pulls out a cardboard box and carefully hands it up to Carmilla.
"Careful opening it, it's delicate."
Carmilla eyes her suspiciously before tugging the box open. She gasps.
"Oh my god, Danny!"
Danny grins as Carmilla pulls the portable turntable out of the box.
"You think I didn't notice you brooding every time you looked at your record collection? I know it's not the antique one you had at your mom's and I'm sorry we couldn't get that one but-"
"Are you kidding? This one is perfect! Especially for here with the space issue." Carmilla interrupts, still staring at it in awe. She suddenly jumps off the bed.
She walks over to the desk under the window and sets the player down, fiddling with it until the adapter is hooked up and plugged into the outlet. She dashes past Danny and over to the bookshelf, grabbing a record off of it and grabbing Danny's wrist with her free hand.
"Come here." She says, dragging Danny over to the record player.
She slides the vinyl out of it's cover and fixes it onto the turntable before flipping it on. She turns back to Danny and holds out her hands as a familiar tune drifts out of the speakers. Danny grins and pulls Carmilla into her arms, dancing them around the room.
'The very thought of you and I forget to do the little ordinary things that everyone ought to do...'
"Jesus H. Christ. There's so many people." Danny mutters, squeezing Carmilla's hand.
"It's freshman orientation, of course there's a ton of people here." Carmilla replies.
"I know but still..." Danny trails off, reaching up and adjusting her sunglasses.
"Who's your advisor?" Carmilla asks, looking up at Danny. Danny pulls the paper out of her back pocket and reads over it.
"Uhhh, Dr. Patel? You?"
"Right. Okay. We'll go take the tour and then find our advisors and then meet back at the fountain?" Danny asks, looking down at Carmilla.
"Deal." Carmilla replies, tugging Danny in the direction of several older students wearing blue polo shirts.
Dr. Patel leans back in her chair after reading through Danny's information on the computer.
"Well, Miss Lawrence, you've got quite the impressive track record."
"Definitely. So, you want to major in astronautical engineering?" She asks.
"Yes." Danny nods eagerly.
"It's a rigorous amount of coursework. It's not for the faint of heart. Most people who start off in that major wind up switching to Mathematics or Physics." Dr. Patel warns.
"With all due respect, doctor, I understand the amount of work I'm going to be doing. I know I can do it." Danny says.
Dr. Patel eyes her for a few moments before smiling.
"Excellent." She says, turning back to the computer. "You need to take Intro to Physics and Calculus I this semester before anything else. I also recommend taking Astronomy 160 this semester, as well. It'll give you a good backbone and you'll get a taste of what our Astronomy courses are like here."
"That sounds good." Danny replies.
"Now, you need a foreign language but...you're a native Spanish and French speaker?" Dr. Patel raises an eyebrow.
"Yes ma'am. My mother's from Barcelona."
Dr. Patel regards her silently.
"Italian or German?" She asks after a moment.
"German." Danny answers.
Dr. Patel types something into the computer before turning back to Danny.
"You need to take one more course, did you have any in mind?"
"Well, I know I need Intro to Communication Skills so...how about that?"
Dr. Patel turns back to the computer and types something in before spinning the monitor around so Danny can see it.
"It is possible to have all these classes on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. You would have German 101 at 9, Intro to CS at 10 in the same building, Calc at noon in the Petty building with Physics 110 at 1, also in the Petty building and then Astronomy at 3 in Sullivan. Your Astronomy lab would be on Wednesday nights from 7 to 8:50. How does that sound?"
"Actually, that sounds perfect." Danny replies, grinning.
Dr. Patel smiles back and hits 'print.'
"We have the same Intro to Communication class." Carmilla says, taking a sip of her drink and reading over Danny's schedule. Danny chokes on her sandwich.
"Seriously?" She asks, once she's stopped coughing.
"Yeah, COM 103 ten in the morning with Lindholm in the Carter building. Room 116." Carmilla reads, pointing at the paper. Danny grins at her.
"For you, maybe, I'm going to be harassed by a giant puppy while I'm trying to learn." Carmilla jokes, chewing on the end of her straw.
Danny rolls her eyes and taps her under the table with her foot.
"Like you won't enjoy every second of it." Danny says.
Carmilla rolls her eyes but she's grinning.
"Ow, fuck, seriously Carmilla? I'm not a pack mule." Danny grumbles as Carmilla piles more books on top of the stack in Danny's arms.
"It's not my fault your Astronomy and Physics books weigh a ton." She replies, rolling her eyes and turning back to the shelves.
"Yeah? Well, these art books of yours weigh more than a small child." Danny groans, shifting her weight.
"Don't let Laura hear you say that." Carmilla jokes.
Danny nearly drops the whole pile, shaking with laughter.
"We've got to stop making those jokes. She's going to develop a complex." Danny says.
"Pretty sure she already has." Carmilla replies, grabbing two copies of their Communication textbook and turning back to Danny.
She starts to add them to the stack but tucks them under her own arm instead, seeing the agony on her girlfriend's face. Danny sighs.
"Come on, that should be the last of them." Carmilla says, jerking her head in the direction of the long checkout line.
"Oh god my arms are going to fall off." She groans.
"You'll survive without arms." Carmilla teases.
"Yeah, but you like my arms. And my hands. And my fingers." Danny replies.
"True. But you're just as good with your tongue." Carmilla replies.
Danny barely manages not to drop the books.
"You do know that classes don't start until the 22nd, right?" Carmilla teases, handing Danny a mug of tea.
Danny looks up from her Astronomy book and takes the mug out of Carmilla's hand.
"It's just so interesting! The whole first lecture is going to be about exoplanets!" She says, grinning up at Carmilla.
"What's an exoplanet?" Carmilla asks, sitting down next to Danny and resting her chin on her shoulder.
"They're planets that orbit another star that's not the sun." Danny explains. "They're pretty cool because it's kind of hard to define what is and what isn't an actual planet and then what classification they are."
Carmilla stares at her for a minute.
"You are such a nerd." She says finally, shifting so that her head is resting against Danny's shoulder.
"Love you too." Danny replies, turning another page in her textbook.
Danny sticks her head out of the shower and raises her eyebrows at Carmilla.
Carmilla gestures at the washing machine.
"You seriously don't know how to work a washing machine?"
Carmilla growls at her.
"Not this one!"
"You can't wait for me to get out of the shower?" Danny teases.
"You said you were almost finished and to go ahead." Carmilla argues.
"I'm kidding, hang on."
Danny ducks back into the shower and a few moments later the water turns off. Danny leans out around the curtain and grabs her towel off the rack and Carmilla gapes as Danny hops out, naked and soaking wet. She wraps the towel around herself loosely and walks over.
"I turned the knob but nothing happened and there's no start button." Carmilla explains.
Danny leans past her and tugs on the knob. There's a popping sound and she turns it to the right setting before pushing it back in. There's another popping sound and the water comes cascading out into the washer. She turns to Carmilla and smirks.
"Anything else, dear?"
Carmilla rolls her eyes and tugs lightly at Danny's towel.
"No, my knight in dripping wet linen."
Danny leans down and kisses her on the cheek. Carmilla groans and shoves at her.
"You'll get me wet- DON'T." She warns, seeing the joke already forming on Danny's lips.
Danny just grins at her and shifts her towel so it's over her head, revealing more of her thighs. Carmilla squeezes her eyes shut and shakes her head.
"You don't play fair."
"You're the one who wanted to do laundry while I'm getting ready." Danny says, her voice muffled by the towel.
She hears the door slam shut and she laughs.
Danny groans and slams her laptop closed.
Carmilla looks up from her own computer.
"It'll be okay." She says.
Danny sets her computer down on the coffee table and stretches out on the dinosaur rug in their living room.
"I need a job."
"I know." Carmilla replies. "Oh, the diner down the street is hiring...oh, wait, but they want someone with at least two years of experience waiting tables."
Danny groans again and covers her face. Carmilla closes her laptop and sits it beside of her on the couch before sliding down into the floor. She sprawls out next to Danny and then pokes her in the side.
"Hey." She whispers.
"Hey." Danny whispers back, dropping her hands away from her face.
"I love you." Carmilla whispers, reaching out and tracing her finger down Danny's nose and then across her lips.
"I love you too." Danny replies, gently kissing Carmilla's finger.
"Let's go to bed." Camilla whispers.
"It's like 6:00." Danny protests, her eyebrows knitting together in confusion.
"Let me rephrase that." Carmilla says, shifting so she's hovering on top of Danny. She leans down and kisses her, slowly, before gently biting down on Danny's bottom lip. "Take me to bed."
Danny wraps her arms around Carmilla's waist and flips her onto her back.
"You're forgetting something." Danny says, hovering over Carmilla's face.
"This is our place. I don't have to take you to the bedroom to fuck you." She whispers.
Carmilla's hands are in her hair instantly.
"PIZZA DELIVERY!" Danny sings from the doorway in her best Spongebob impersonation.
Carmilla looks up from her British Lit anthology and raises an eyebrow.
"Must you?" She asks.
"You literally made me chase you around the entire apartment to get my shirt back while you were yelling 'it's for the customer!' so I don't want to hear it." Danny says, setting the pizza box down on the counter.
"I have no idea what you're talking about." Carmilla replies airily, turning back to her reading.
"We got a noise complaint." Danny says, incredulously.
Carmilla shrugs but Danny can tell she's barely holding back a smile. Danny shakes her head and grabs two plates out of the cabinet.
"One of these days we need to invest in actual plates instead of these paper ones." She says, opening the pizza box.
"I saw a set at Target the other day that had paw prints on them and I actually considered buying them for half of a second." Carmilla says.
Danny flops down on the couch next to her and hands her a plate.
"Your disgusting mushroom and banana pepper monstrosity." Danny says.
"Aw, babe." Carmilla says, grinning and taking the plate from her.
"Yeah, yeah. I sacrificed half of my bacon and extra cheese for that shit so I hope you know I love you." Danny replies.
Carmilla leans over and pecks her on the cheek before taking a huge bite out of her pizza and moaning. Danny fake gags and Carmilla elbows her.
"It's not that bad."
"Listen, I tolerate your atrocious attraction to buffalo ranch pringles-"
"Do you know how they grow mushrooms?"
"Do you know how they make hot dogs?"
Danny's eyes widen.
"Do not ruin my Chicago Dogs. Don't you dare."
Carmilla grins at her and takes another huge bite of her pizza. Danny laughs and shakes her head.
"God, this guy is such a cocky asshole." Carmilla mumbles from where her head rests against Danny's chest.
She scoffs as the chef announces to the camera that he's easily the most talented chef here.
"Yeah right, dickwad, I bet you get chopped next." Carmilla grumbles.
'For this round, you must use: cheese puffs, raspberry jam, squid and english cucumbers.'
"Oh that's rough." Carmilla says. "Any ideas, baby?"
Danny doesn't answer.
She lifts her head up to find Danny fast asleep against the side of the couch. She smiles and snuggles further into Danny's arms and rests her head back down against her chest.
"Goodnight, love." She whispers. "Oh, good. Asshole burned himself."
"Fuck, I'm going to be late for my first class." Danny says, rushing out of the bathroom and back into the bedroom.
"You've got plenty of time. The metro doesn't leave for another 30 minutes." Carmilla says, still sprawled out on their bed.
"Yeah, but I have to walk to the station which takes like 10 minutes and I can't find my fucking shirt." Danny grumbles.
Carmilla rolls off the bed with a sigh and reaches under a stack of her own shirts piled in the desk chair and pulls out Danny's red and white baseball shirt. She throws it right as Danny turns around from their dresser and it hits Danny in the face.
"Thanks, babe." Danny says, tugging it on quickly.
"Your Astronomy syllabus is still under the coffee table." Carmilla says, pointing to the living room.
"I love you so much, seriously." Danny replies.
"You're just saying that because I keep track of your shit." Carmilla teases.
Danny walks over and kisses her.
"Yeah." She jokes.
Carmilla laughs and shoves at her.
"See you in our Com class?"
"Okay, get out of here." Carmilla says, shoving at her again.
Danny rolls her eyes and grabs her bag from beside the desk, bolting down the hall.
"Syllabus!" Carmilla calls after her.
"See you later!"
"See you! Love you!"
"Love you too, make good choices!"
Danny cracks up.
She closes the door behind her, still laughing.
"I saved you a seat." Danny says as Carmilla makes her way over to Danny's table.
"This classroom is a lot smaller than I thought it'd be." Carmilla whispers, sitting down in the chair next to Danny.
"Well, it's not a lecture." Danny explains.
"Great, so it'll be like high school 2.0." Carmilla groans.
Danny laughs and rubs her back.
Minutes later, the professor walks into the classroom and introduces himself as Professor Lindholm and spends 10 minutes going over the syllabus before dismissing them.
"I'm not liking this whole 'speech' thing." Carmilla admits as they walk out together.
"You'll be fine. You have me." Danny says, lightly elbowing her.
"That's why I'm worried. You're going to make me crack up the whole time." Carmilla jokes. "Listen, since we got out early, I've got a half an hour before my Spanish class..wanna go make out on a park bench?"
Danny laughs and reaches for Carmilla's hand.
"I am in LOVE with my Astronomy class!" Danny announces, dropping her bag on the living room floor.
"Are you breaking up with me for science?" Carmilla asks, not looking up from her Art History textbook.
"Well, if you do, give me some notice so I can pack my thin- hey!"
Danny yanks the textbook out of Carmilla's hands and leans down, kissing her hard on the lips. Carmilla moans as Danny pulls back.
"I missed you."
Carmilla grins at her.
"Astronomy didn't fill the void?"
"Not nearly enough."
Carmilla laughs and pulls Danny back in for another kiss.
"Thank god, I thought I was going to have to fight an entire galaxy." Carmilla teases.
"No, the only galaxy I'm in love with is the one right here." Danny says, sliding her hand over Carmilla's heart and pressing lightly.
Carmilla smiles and kisses her over and over.
"I have some good news!" Danny announces as Carmilla closes the door behind her and kicks off her shoes.
"They finally figured out how to make a potato chip that tastes like tacos?" Carmilla asks.
"Not quite that good." Danny admits.
"Damn." Carmilla says, grinning.
"You know that bakery near campus?" Danny asks.
"Yeah, I got a job there!"
"Wait, seriously?" Carmilla pauses in raiding the fridge.
"Yeah, I went in there on my break Monday to get a muffin and saw they were hiring so I asked the guy if he had any applications. Turns out they really need someone with 'oven experience' and since I practically ran the pastry counter at Java's back home...I got the job!" Danny explains.
"Baby, that is awesome!" Carmilla exclaims, jumping into Danny's arms. Danny laughs.
"I start the 1st." Danny says, gently setting Carmilla back on the floor.
"Wait. Does this mean I get free muffins?" Carmilla asks.
"You can have my muffin for free." Danny jokes, waggling her eyebrows. Carmilla swats at her.
"Yeah but I can't actually eat- well, I can but not literally- will you stop laughing at me!" She says, shoving at Danny.
"You- you set yourself up for that." Danny says, laughing.
"Oh, whatever. Do I get baked goods or not?"
"Yes." Danny replies, finally calming down.
"Score!" Carmilla says, fist pumping.
"And you call me a nerd." Danny teases.
"Excuse you, free baked goods are completely worth getting excited over." Carmilla argues.
"Okay, you're right."
"Of course I am." Carmilla replies, winking.
Danny shakes her head, still grinning.
Danny blinks as a tiny wadded up piece of paper bounces off her Physics textbook. She brushes it off and goes back to reading. A few moments later, another one bounces off her notebook. She ignores it. A third one bounces off her nose and she sighs.
"Can I help you?" She asks, turning to look at Carmilla who's stretched out on the couch with her British Lit anthology resting on her chest.
Carmilla grins and stops wadding up another piece of paper from her notebook.
"Come up here." She begs.
"You're too distracting in those glasses of yours." Danny replies. Carmilla arches an eyebrow.
"Come up here." She repeats.
"No." Danny says, shaking her head and turning back to her book.
She hears Carmilla sigh loudly and she rolls her eyes, smiling. Carmilla slides off the couch and crawls over to where Danny's sitting, sliding her arms around Danny's waist.
"Carm." Danny warns. "I really need to finish this."
"And I really need to read this fucking Chaucer nonsense but we can at least be comfortable while we torture ourselves." Carmilla reasons, sliding her hands under Danny's shirt.
"Fine, come here." Danny says, shifting so Carmilla can sit sideways on her lap.
She could easily see her book over Carmilla's head, and since Carmilla was sitting sideways, she could still write with her right hand and Carm could read.
"We're disgusting." Carmilla says after a few minutes.
"What are you cooking?" Carmilla asks, walking into the kitchen and toweling her hair dry.
"Chicken and rice." Danny replies.
"Smells fantastic." Carmilla says, hopping onto one of their bar stools.
"So do you. Isn't that my shampoo?" Danny teases.
Carmilla blushes and mumbles something under her breath.
"What was that?" Danny asks, turning from stirring the rice.
"I like using your shampoo if I shower at night. It's nice." Carmilla admits, shrugging and not meeting Danny's eye.
"You're cute." Danny says, turning back to the food. "How did your interview go?"
"I don't know. I don't think I got the job. The guy kind of seemed like he was going through the motions. But I still have that barista job and the cashier job at that clothing store so...here's hoping." Carmilla replies, running her hand through her hair.
"Their loss." Danny says, grabbing for the bottle of sriracha sauce.
"You're not putting that IN the rice, are you?" Carmilla asks, pausing in combing her fingers through her hair.
"Yeah, but I'm only putting the same amount you usually put on yours." Danny replies.
"Okay, just not too much." Carmilla says.
"Is it ready?"
"Yes." Carmilla starts to hop off the stool but Danny holds up her hand.
"I've got you. You want water or orange soda?" She asks.
Danny grabs a water out of the fridge and hands it to her before grabbing two bowls out of the cabinet. Carmilla watches as she loads them both with food and hands the green one to Carmilla along with a fork.
"You always give me the green one." Carmilla says, stirring her food with her fork.
"I know green's your favorite color." Danny replies, moving to sit next to her at the counter.
"You know, now? I'm kind of a fan of red." Carmilla teases, reaching out to brush Danny's hair away from her face.
"Sap." Danny teases.
Carmilla rolls her eyes.
"You gonna tell me where we're going?" Carmilla asks as Danny swings their clasped hands between them.
"Nope." Danny replies simply.
Carmilla groans and lets Danny lead them further down the street.
Twenty minutes later, Danny's leading her inside the largest art museum Carmilla's ever seen.
"Welcome to the Smithsonian American Art Museum." Danny says, grinning down at her.
"Danny..." Carmilla trails off, not quite knowing where to look first.
"I got to thinking the other day that it was an absolute crime that we've been living here a few weeks and still hadn't been here yet." Danny explains.
"First you bring me coffee after class and now this? You trying to win me over or something?" Carmilla teases.
"Is it working?" Danny asks.
"You're damn right it is." Carmilla replies, beaming up at her.
Danny barely manages to get the door open as she and Carmilla spill into their apartment. She kicks the door closed behind them while Carmilla yanks her own shirt off and then grabs at Danny's.
"We almost gave the neighbors a show." Danny teases.
Carmilla laughs and tugs Danny back down for another kiss. She moans as Danny's hands unbuckle her belt and then undo her jeans. She reaches behind her back and unclasps her bra, pulling away from Danny's mouth so she can yank it off. Danny's eyes cloud over and she slips her hands up from Carmilla's pants to her waist, lifting her up. Carmilla's legs wrap around Danny's waist as Danny walks them back to the bedroom.
She gently drops Carmilla down onto the bed and then swiftly tugs her pants and underwear down and off of her. Carmilla moans as Danny's hands slide up her thighs and she settles between her legs. At the first swipe of her tongue, Carmilla's hands are in Danny's hair and she's swallowing another moan.
She falls apart watching stars explode into life behind her eyelids and chanting Danny's name like a prayer.
Chapter 2: September I.
"Danny, seriously. I need to get up." Carmilla says, lightly shoving at Danny's shoulder.
Danny groans and presses her face harder into Carmilla's chest.
"Five more minutes."
"I've given you three 'five more minutes' come on." Carmilla argues, combing her fingers through Danny's unruly hair before tickling the back of her neck.
Danny jerks up and rolls off of Carmilla. She opens one eye and glares.
"Like you haven't done the same thing to me when I won't let you get up." She says, rolling out of bed and grabbing Danny's shirt off the floor. She tugs it on and continues toward the door. "If I miss the Metro you're driving me to class."
Danny groans again and grabs Carmilla's pillow from her side of the bed, praying that her girlfriend wouldn't be late. Downtown traffic was hell to navigate in a car.
"Don't you have to work today?" Carmilla calls out from the bathroom.
"Not until noon, it's like eight in the morning." Danny replies, her voice muffled by Carmilla's pillow.
She hears the shower turn on and yanks the blanket back over her head with a sigh.
"As long as you keep your sleeves pushed up and don't reach all the way into the ovens, you should be fine." Jasmine, Danny's new co-worker, explains gesturing around the kitchen.
"Awesome!" Danny replies, grinning.
"Kate's pretty good about screw-ups too. So, you don't really need to be paranoid about things. If you make a bad batch, you make a bad batch. Just fix it as quick as you can." Jasmine says. Danny nods.
"How long have you been working here?" She asks.
"About a year. I'm a junior at Georgetown and I started about midway through my sophomore year." Jasmine replies.
"What's your major?" Danny asks.
"Journalism with a minor in Communication." Jasmine replies, grinning. "You?"
"Astronautical engineering." Danny says.
"So if I need help with my math, I should call you. Got it." Jasmine jokes. Danny laughs.
"I'll do my best."
The bell above the bakery entrance chimes and both girls turn toward the front counter.
"I'll grab that, you refill the flour bin." Jasmine says, pointing to the large bags of flour resting against the back wall.
She ducks out of the kitchen as Danny looks around for a pair of scissors. She finds a pair and grabs the first bag, cutting it open slowly. She turns and dumps it into the large metal bin next to the worktop, repeating the same process with the next three bags. She goes the dump the fourth and final bag into the bin when it slips from her hand and drops to the floor.
A huge white cloud poofs up into Danny's face, sending her into a coughing fit. She doubles over, grabbing the worktop for support.
"Everything o- oh. Oh no."
Danny looks up, waving away the cloud of flour to find Kate, her boss and the bakery owner, looking at her with an amused expression.
"Watch the flour, Lawrence. It's a bitch to clean up." She says, winking and then disappearing back into her office.
Danny coughs one more time before glaring down at the spilled flour bag.
"How was your first day?" Carmilla asks, reaching into the fridge for a bottle of water.
"I spilled flour everywhere and burned a batch of cupcakes." Danny says, frowning down at her plate of pasta.
Carmilla puts the bottle of water back in the fridge and reaches for a bottle of cranberry-grape juice instead. She turns and hands it to Danny.
"What did your boss say?"
Danny smiles briefly while taking the bottle of juice from Carmilla.
"She laughed about the flour and told me not to worry about the cupcakes. She said it was my first day and I was still getting used to things." Danny replies.
"That's good, right?"
"Well, yeah but-"
"-but you're a perfectionist and you're upset with yourself." Carmilla finishes for her. Danny nods and takes a gulp of her juice.
"I just wanted to make a good impression." She replies, shrugging and poking at her pasta with her fork.
She feels Carmilla's hand slide to the back of her neck and she looks up. Carmilla leans down and kisses her softly on the lips.
"I'm sure they loved you. I know I do." Carmilla mumbles against her mouth.
Danny smiles and kisses her again.
Danny jerks upright as Carmilla's elbow jabs into her arm.
"I'm awake!" She whispers.
Carmilla chuckles because, no, she was not.
Professor Lindholm continues scribbling on the whiteboard about how to communicate in a professional setting as Danny discreetly yawns.
"Whatever." She mumbles under her breath.
"Don't worry, I've been taking notes." Carmilla whispers, tapping her notebook with her pen.
"Does this mean I can go back to sleep?" Danny asks. Carmilla rolls her eyes and elbows her again.
"No, you slacker."
Danny covers her laugh with a fake cough.
"You're going to get us in trouble." Carmilla hisses. Danny shakes her head.
"No I won't."
Carmilla shakes her head and turns back to the board as Danny leans over to copy her notes.
Danny stretches her legs out across their dinosaur rug and sighs.
Carmilla looks up from her Art History textbook and adjusts her glasses.
"What's wrong?" She asks.
"I am so not ready for this Physics exam." Danny replies, shaking her head and glaring down at her textbook.
"You'll be fine, you overgrown nerd." Carmilla scoffs, turning back to her own book. Danny glares over at her.
"Thanks." She says, sarcastically.
"I love you." Carmilla sings.
Danny grumbles unintelligibly and turns the page in her book.
"You have literally built rockets from scratch, why are you stressing out?" Carmilla asks, looking over at her.
"It's just a lot of information. Plus, it's the first exam. If I tank it now I won't be able to come back from it." Danny replies.
"Hey, look at me." Carmilla says.
Danny looks up from her Physics book and meets Carmilla's stare.
"You'll be fine. You know this crap." Carmilla tells her softly.
"You're right." Danny admits, relaxing.
"Always am." Carmilla replies, turning back to her book with a smirk.
Danny shakes her head and grins.
"How did you interview go?" Danny asks as Carmilla closes the door behind her.
Carmilla doesn't answer. Instead, she kicks off her shoes and walks into the kitchen where Danny's standing. She wraps her arms around Danny's waist and presses her face into her chest.
"Was it that bad?" Danny murmurers, rubbing Carmilla's back.
"I don't want to talk about it." Carmilla whispers, tightening her grip on Danny's waist.
"Okay." Danny says.
She stands there holding Carmilla for a few minutes before a bubbling sound catches her attention.
"Shit! My rice!"
Danny lets go of Carmilla and turns back to the stove, where her pot of rice has started to boil over. She swears under her breath as she turns down the heat and takes the rice off of the burner.
"What the hell happened to my cooking skills?" She whines, glaring at the pot in her hands. Carmilla laughs.
"Still there. I just distracted you." Carmilla says.
"At least I didn't burn it." She mutters.
"Oh my god, are you still upset about those cupcakes?" Carmilla asks, laughing.
"Baby, it was your first day. It wasn't a big deal."
"I have never burnt anything in my entire life." Danny argues, setting the rice back down on the stove. "I half expected my mother to pop up and be like 'Daniella, how could you? Did I teach you nothing!'"
Carmilla doubles over laughing.
"Oh, but she would."
Danny shakes her head and dumps the chicken into the rice.
"She once cussed out my dad in Spanish for burning a frozen pizza." She says. Carmilla laughs harder.
"Oh yeah. She's serious about her cooking." Danny explains.
Carmilla grabs plates from their cabinet.
"Have you talked to her lately?" She asks.
"Yesterday, yeah. She said the neighbors got a new puppy." Danny replies.
Carmilla narrows her eyes at her.
"We're not getting a dog."
Carmilla rolls her eyes.
"I already have one puppy to take care of, I don't need another." She explains.
"Seriously?" Danny whines.
Carmilla leans up and kisses her briefly.
"Seriously. No pets." Carmilla says.
Danny sighs loudly.
"Fine. But one day you'll change your mind." She says, winking.
"We should probably get up."
"That's the worst idea you've ever had."
"Seriously, it's almost noon."
"Getting up means I have to put clothes on."
"Well, not technically."
"You can help me load the dishwasher naked."
"And if you want to fold laundry naked, I'm certainly not going to stop you."
There's a long pause and Danny rolls over, expecting to find Carmilla sleeping again. Instead she finds Carmilla's head buried under her pillow and her hand resting on top of it, flicking her off. She lets out a bark of laughter.
"I'm just saying, we have stuff to do and I'm not going to stand in the way of you doing things naked." She says.
Carmilla launches the pillow at her and it hits Danny square in the nose.
"Leave me alone." She grumbles. Danny laughs.
"Fine. I'll do the dishes by myself."
She tosses her half of the blankets onto Carmilla's head and then drops the pillow on top of her too.
"Ass." Carmilla's reply is muffled by the pile of fabric.
"Hey babe, where did you put the fabric softener sheets?" Carmilla calls out, looking around their bathroom that doubles as their laundry room.
"They should be on the shelf next to the dryer." Danny calls back from the living room.
Carmilla double checks but still doesn't see the box anywhere.
"They're not there." She yells.
She hears Danny walking down the hall and few seconds later her head appears in the doorway.
"They're right there. Behind the detergent." Danny says, pointing.
Carmilla looks up and sighs when she sees the green box sticking out exactly where Danny said it was.
"That was not there five minutes ago."
"Mhm. Sure." Danny replies, winking at her.
"Whatever." Carmilla grumbles.
Danny laughs before leaning into the room.
"Hey." She says.
Carmilla quirks an eyebrow but steps over closer to Danny. Danny immediately leans down and kisses her gently.
Carmilla shoves at her, blushing.
Danny grins to herself as she watches Carmilla walk out of the door to her lecture hall. She runs her hand through her dark hair and reaches for her phone inside her pocket with the other. Danny waits for her to get closer before pushing off of the wall she was leaned against.
Carmilla jumps slightly but grins when she realizes it's Danny.
"Please tell me one of those is for me." She says, pointing at the two cups of coffee in Danny's hands.
Danny smiles and hands her one of the cups.
"You're a goddess." Carmilla says, taking a sip of her coffee and moaning.
"You're only saying that because I brought you coffee." Danny laughs.
"That and your cheekbones." Carmilla teases, winking at her.
Danny laughs and slips her arm around Carmilla's waist.
"I have to head to work so I figured I'd drop by campus and bring my favorite girl some much needed caffeine."
"We're disgusting." Carmilla groans, leaning into Danny's side.
"I mean I can always knock your cup out of your hand or something." Danny jokes.
"I wasn't complaining, I was making a statement." Carmilla says, rolling her eyes and smiling.
"So, good disgusting?" Danny asks.
"Disney movies would be jealous of us." Carmilla replies.
"Dude it's so fuckin' cold here. Like, it's September and I'm wearing a fuckin' hoodie." Maddie complains.
"You're in Michigan!" Danny laughs. "What did you expect?"
"I don't know." Maddie grumbles.
Danny watches Maddie tug on the drawstrings of her hoodie on her laptop screen.
"How does it feel to not be playing hockey?" Maddie asks.
"Weird. Sometimes I wish Rogers had a hockey team but then I look at all the stuff I have to do for my classes plus work and I'm kind of glad. But it was a good stress reliever sometimes." She replies. Maddie nods.
"I get that." Maddie says.
"How's Julie doing?" Danny asks. Maddie grins.
"She's good. She definitely does not miss home. She likes being able to go wherever and do whatever, you know how her parents are." She replies.
"Is her mom still texting her like every morning?" Danny asks.
"Nah, Julie kind of went off on her a week or so ago saying that she was disrupting her studying so she's toned it down."
"Was she really or was that just an excuse?"
"No, the only thing actually interrupting her studying is me. But I haven't heard her complaining about that." Maddie replies, wiggling her eyebrows.
"TMI, Mads." Danny groans. Maddie cackles.
"Oh please, you were the one who texted me three days ago talking about your girlfriend and her perfect nipples."
"That's completely out of context." She argues as Carmilla's head snaps up from her Spanish workbook.
"What?" Carmilla mouths. Danny shakes her head.
"You were all 'Carmilla's nipples are perfect and its distracting.' There's your context." Maddie says, laughing harder.
"What?" Carmilla mouths again, more aggressively.
"I just meant that it was hard to focus on Physics when she was walking around looking for her sports bra, that's all." Danny says, shaking her head.
Carmilla continues to stare at her as Maddie laughs again.
"You brought it up!" Danny argues.
"All I remember saying was asking you how your studying was going." Maddie counters.
"Whatever." Danny mumbles, ignoring Carmilla's half-amused, half-exasperated stare.
"Carmilla's glaring at you, isn't she?"
"Hey, what can I- oh! Hey Carm!" Danny grins as Carmilla makes her way up to the counter of the bakery.
"What are you doing here?" Danny asks.
"I figured I'd come visit you. See where you work." Carmilla replies, shrugging.
"You totally missed me." Danny teases.
"Admit it. You did." Danny says.
"I most certainly did not." Carmilla counters.
"If you say so." Danny says, grinning broadly. Carmilla rolls her eyes.
"Please tell me this is the infamous Carmilla Karnstein." Jasmine says, walking out of the kitchen.
"It is." Danny replies at the same time as Carmilla asks "infamous?"
"Lawrence never shuts up about you." Jasmine says, shrugging.
"Thanks." Danny mutters as Carmilla smirks.
"Good to know." Carmilla replies.
"It's nice to finally meet you. I'd shake your hand but I have frosting on me." Jasmine says. Carmilla laughs.
"It's fine. It's nice to meet you too."
Danny rolls her eyes.
"Great, now my girlfriend and my work friend are friends." She sighs.
Jasmine laughs as Carmilla winks at her.
"Aw, I'm your work friend?" Jasmine teases.
"Shut up." Danny grumbles.
"Sap." Carmilla and Jasmine joke in unison.
"I'm pretty sure I'm not going to make it out of high school alive." Laura complains.
Danny chokes on her pasta and Carmilla laughs.
"You'll be fine." Carmilla assures her, adjusting her laptop screen so they can see Laura better.
"No. No I'm not." Laura groans, picking at a loose thread on her duvet.
"Why are you stressing? What's happened?" Danny asks.
"Nothing." Laura says.
"Yeah right. Spill." Carmilla scoffs.
"It's just...stupid." Laura dismisses, shaking her head.
"Come on, Little Bear." Danny coaxes. Laura sighs.
"I'm just swamped with homework and my dad is freaking out about colleges and the SAT and I barely have time to breathe and then there's the dumb girl stuff..." She trails off.
Carmilla sits up straighter.
"What dumb girl stuff?" She asks. Laura shrugs.
"If Elsie's being a butt I'll come down there and break her nose." Danny growls.
"Whoa wait. Elsie? What? What?" Carmilla says, almost knocking the laptop over.
"It's nothing." Laura says.
"Laura's got a crush on Elsie and Elsie's a moron." Danny summarizes.
Laura glares at her.
"Thanks a ton, Danny."
"Wait. Hold on. Since when?" Carmilla asks.
"Prom." Danny and Laura reply in unison.
"How did I miss this." Carmilla mutters.
"I was discreet." Laura says, shrugging.
"I dated her." Danny says, pointing at Laura.
Carmilla shakes her head slowly.
"It's not a big deal." Laura mumbles.
"Okay. But. If she's a bitch to you, I'll kill her." Carmilla replies nonchalantly.
Danny bursts out laughing at the look of sheer horror on Laura's face.
Carmilla groans and slams her Art History textbook closed.
"There's no way I'm going to be able to remember any of this." She says, covering her face with her hands.
"If it makes you feel any better, I'm going to bomb my German oral." Danny says, rolling over onto her back. Carmilla snorts.
"You bombing oral? Not possible." She teases.
Danny blushes and shakes her head.
"I'm just being honest." Carmilla replies.
"Seriously, my diction is terrible and I keep getting things mixed up." Danny says.
"You want to take a break and help me with this nonsense?" Carmilla asks, giving Danny her best smile.
"What do I get out of it?" Danny teases.
"Back massage?" Carmilla offers.
"Oh fuck yes, hand me your study guide." Danny says, leaping off the floor and onto the couch.
"Nerd." Carmilla laughs.
"Wait, wait, wait. So you two took the wrong train and wound up in New Jersey?"
"It was awful. Awful. It took us all night to get back to Manhattan." She replies.
"I think the two of you need to invest in a better GPS." Danny says, shaking her head.
"It wasn't the GPS. It was LaF reading the wrong train schedule." Perry says, rolling her eyes. "I love them, I do, but LaFontaine is god-awful with directions."
Danny laughs and shakes her head.
"If it makes you feel any better, the first day we were here Carm and I got lost trying to find the grocery store."
"That helps a little." Perry replies, grinning. "So how are you two?"
"We're good. Stressed about school and Carm keeps getting turned down at job interviews but...we're solid." Danny replies, smiling.
"Good." Perry replies. "Has Carmilla heard anything out of her mother?"
Danny's face darkens.
"No. And she better not or I'm driving down there and giving her piece of my mind. And possibly my fist." She says.
"Easy there, killer." Perry teases.
"I'm serious. After all the shit that she's put Carmilla through if she tries to interfere now that she's finally happy? No way." Danny replies, shaking her head.
"If anything happens, you'll call us? Right?" Perry asks.
"Of course." Danny replies, nodding.
"Now, tell me why you haven't sent me a care package filled with baked goods yet?" Perry demands.
Danny yelps as the shower curtain is yanked back.
"What are you doing? You scared the fuck out of me!" She exclaims as Carmilla smirks at her.
Carmilla doesn't answer. Instead, she raises an eyebrow and looks Danny up and down. Danny feels her ears burning as her face flushes red.
"What?" She asks.
"Mind if I join you?" Carmilla asks, her voice still rough from sleep.
Danny nods slowly as Carmilla strips off her shirt and tosses it behind her, barely missing the laundry basket. Carmilla slowly drags her underwear down her legs before kicking them out of the way and then in a flash she's jumping into the shower and pressing herself against Danny's body.
"Hey." Danny whispers.
"Hi." Carmilla replies.
Danny reaches behind them and pulls the shower curtain closed as Carmilla scratches down Danny's back. She leans down and kisses her over and over again as Carmilla walks them a step backward under the spray of water. Danny slides her hand to Carmilla's hip while the other slides between her thighs. Carmilla's nails press harder into Danny's back as she gently bites down on her shoulder. Danny moves her fingers between Carmilla's thighs faster until Carmilla comes, hard and fast, against her.
They stand there for a moment, letting the hot water hit them, until Carmilla finally moves her mouth away from Danny's shoulder and smiles.
"What was that?" Danny asks, lightly tracing her fingers up and down Carmilla's sides.
"I woke up and the bed was empty. I heard the shower running and the longer I lay there the more this sounded like a good idea." Carmilla admits. Danny laughs.
"It definitely was." She says.
"We should make this a regular thing." Carmilla says, dragging her nails down Danny's back and around to her hips.
"Definitely." Danny says, shivering slightly.
Carmilla smirks and gently shoves Danny back against the shower wall.
Carmilla freezes as her hair dryer and the lights of the bathroom all shut off abruptly. She stands there in the total darkness for a few moments before the panic slowly creeps up her spine.
"Danny? Danny!" She calls out.
She hears a loud thud and her girlfriend swearing and then the door is swinging open.
"Hey, come here."
"I- where is 'here?'"
"Come to the door."
"The door, not the wall."
"What was that? I stepped on something what was that?"
"My foot. You stepped on my foot."
Danny gently slips her hand into Carmilla's and squeezes.
"Come on, let's go light those candles in our room."
"How do we not own a flashlight." Carmilla groans, stretching out on their bed and watching the candles on the desk flicker.
"Next time we go to the store we'll grab one." Danny says, reaching out and rubbing Carmilla's leg.
"What did the landlord say?" Carmilla asks.
"That the whole building was out and it probably wouldn't be fixed until morning." Danny replies, squeezing Carmilla's knee.
"This sucks." Carmilla groans, glaring up at the ceiling.
"You're just mad because you didn't get to finish drying your hair." Danny teases.
"It's all curly. I hate it when it's like this." Carmilla whines.
Danny laughs and shakes her head.
"The only thing we have to eat that we don't have to make or heat up is peanut butter sandwiches. We don't even have jelly." Carmilla says, glaring at the kitchen cabinet.
"I'll add jelly to the list. Right under the flashlight." Danny says, laughing.
"It's not funny. I'm going to starve." Carmilla says.
"You will not. Mr. O'Connor said the power would be back on in the morning." Danny replies, shaking her head.
"Morning is like twelve hours from now." Carmilla argues, pointing at her.
Danny lightly grabs Carmilla's finger and squeezes.
"I won't let you starve, calm down. I'll go get us some take out."
Carmilla grabs Danny's hand and tugs her down into a kiss.
"I love you."
"Yeah, well, I'm not getting you that god-awful mushroom and banana pepper pizza so don't get too mushy."
Danny stretches out across the dinosaur rug with a sigh.
She glances over at the coffee table, covered with empty Chinese take-out boxes, and then back over at the couch where Carmilla's sleeping. She notices the goosebumps forming on Carmilla's arms and the way her eyebrows are pulling together and frowns.
She stands up and quietly walks over to the couch. She bends down and, as gently as she can, lifts Carmilla up off the couch. Carmilla's arms immediately curl around Danny's neck and Danny carries her back to their bedroom.
Carmilla stirs just as Danny gets to the bed.
"Danny?" She rasps.
"I've got you." Danny whispers, gently lowering her onto the mattress. "Go back to sleep."
Carmilla reaches for Danny's arm and Danny climbs into the bed behind her, winding her arms around Carmilla's waist.
"Go back to sleep." She repeats.
Carmilla's breathing evens out again and she's fast asleep within seconds.
"Come on, Karnstein!" Danny calls out, turning so she's jogging backwards. Carmilla glares at her.
"Why are we doing this?" Carmilla complains, picking up her pace slightly to keep up with Danny's long strides.
"You said you wanted to go to the park." Danny reminds her, still jogging backwards.
"Yes. Go to. Not run in." Carmilla complains, shaking her head.
"This isn't running. This is jogging. If we were running I'd be way ahead of you." Danny teases. Carmilla growls.
"You think so?" Carmilla asks.
"I know so." Danny replies.
Carmilla narrows her eyes and suddenly bolts past Danny.
"Hey!" Danny yells, spinning around and tearing off after her.
Carmilla's laugh echoes through the park.
"Admit it, I beat you." Carmilla teases.
"You had a head start, it doesn't count." Danny argues.
Carmilla shrugs and takes a bite of her ice cream.
"Somebody sounds like a sore loser." She says, grinning.
"I wasn't- you didn't-" Danny breaks off with a loud sigh. "Fine. You won."
"Thank you." Carmilla says, taking another bite of her ice cream. "Was that so hard?"
"Yes." Danny replies. Carmilla laughs.
"Come on, I bought you ice cream. Don't be a baby." Carmilla teases. Danny smiles at her.
"Okay, okay, fine." She laughs.
Carmilla winks at her.
Carmilla stretches out, lightly kicking Danny underneath the table. Danny smiles at her.
They were camped out in the library studying. Danny for her Astronomy exam and Carmilla for her Art History exam. They wound up at the library after Carmilla had plopped down in Danny's lap and declared that she needed a change of scenery and since they couldn't study outside because of the rain, this was their best option.
"How many more questions do you have on your study guide?" Carmilla asks, nudging Danny's leg again.
"Like six, why? Are you almost done?"
Carmilla holds up her half blank study guide and gives her a look.
"Oh." Danny says, laughing.
"I hate this class but I also love this class." Carmilla says.
"Everything is interesting it's just...there's so much information." She explains. Danny nods.
"I get that. Most history classes are like that. It's like, you're interested in learning about the information but there's so much it's hard to get it all together for the exams." Danny says.
"Yes." Carmilla agrees.
"Maybe you should talk to my dad? He could probably help you study." Danny offers.
Carmilla looks at her for a moment before dropping her head to the table.
"Your dad is a history professor." She groans.
"Yes. Yes he is."
"How did I forget that?" Carmilla whines.
Danny reaches across the table and ruffles Carmilla's hair.
"Aw, we'll call him tomorrow." She says, grinning.
"You're mocking me."
"Okay. But. You are."
"I'm really not."
"Yeah, you kinda are."
"I'm kinda n- OW!"
Danny jerks back as Carmilla kicks her right in the shin. Carmilla's face immediately pales.
"Shit, I just meant to tap you. I'm sorry."
"No, it's okay. That was my shin, but it's okay." Danny assures her.
Carmilla makes an apologetic face and Danny laughs.
"Jerk." She teases. Carmilla rolls her eyes.
"Whatever, you're the one who dropped a table on my toe."
"You are never going to let me live that down are you?" Danny asks.
"Never." Carmilla laughs.
Chapter 3: October I.
"Well, the Temple of Jupiter Optimus Maximus Capitolinus-"
"You're making that up."
"I am not."
Carmilla groans as Derek chuckles at her.
"Your professor is probably going to want you to abbreviate it as the Temple of Jupiter OMC." He says.
"Well, that's a little easier. Okay. So when was that built?"
"It was dedicated in 509 BC."
"And that was the Etruscans, right?"
Carmilla closes her notebook and leans back.
"I think that's all of it." She says. Derek smiles at her.
"Well, if you need any more help don't hesitate to Skype me again." He offers.
"I'll probably have to do that more than once. Did you want to talk to the delinquent?" Carmilla jokes as Danny looks up from where she'd been trying to discreetly slip a cookie out of the package and frowns.
"Delinquent?" She calls out as Derek laughs.
"Yeah, tell her to lean her head down here."
"Hey!" Danny complains, leaning around Carmilla's laptop and glaring at her father.
"What?" He asks, grinning.
"No tall jokes when you're not physically in the room with me." She admonishes, pointing at him.
"Okay, okay. I'll save them all for Thanksgiving. Prepare for an entire sonnet about your height." Derek teases.
"Goodbye, dad." Danny laughs, hanging up on him mid-laugh. She sighs.
"So that's where you get it." Carmilla jokes.
"Shut up, Karnstein." Danny laughs, lightly flicking her ear.
"Are you cold?" Danny asks as Carmilla leans into her more.
"A little. It's not that bad, though." Carmilla replies.
Danny pauses their walk through the park and starts taking off her jacket.
"You don't have to-" Carmilla starts, blushing as Danny hands it to her. "Thanks."
She tugs it on and zips it up, reaching for Danny's hand again after.
"It's nice out." Carmilla says.
"It is. I figured we might as well enjoy the nice weather before we get snowed on." Danny replies. Carmilla groans.
"I don't want to think about snow."
"You don't like snow?" Danny asks, stopping.
"Hell no. It's cold and wet and everywhere. And it makes the power go out and you're stuck indoors with nothing to do and you're freezing." Carmilla replies.
"I'm sure we could find something to do to keep ourselves warm." Danny says, smirking.
Carmilla laughs and rolls her eyes, shoving at Danny's shoulder.
"Perv." She teases.
"What are you talking about? I totally meant exercise." Danny jokes, grinning.
"Fuck that. I've seen your workout DVDs. I'm not putting myself through that hell." Carmilla says, shaking her head.
"You secretly love it."
"I not-so-secretly love your abs, so by all means continue torturing yourself." Carmilla says.
Danny laughs and tugs Carmilla into her, wrapping her arms around her waist. She feels Carmilla's hands slide underneath the front of her shirt and she cracks up laughing again.
"Now who's the perv?"
"Do you have any idea what he's talking about?"
"No. And for the record, I hate this class."
"At least it's easy?"
"True. But at this point I'd much rather just gnaw off my own arm."
Danny giggles into her hand.
"You would not."
"Want to bet?"
Carmilla arches her eyebrow and Danny shakes her head.
"I'm not going to bet you to chew off your own arm. Freak."
"Someone has been playing too much Dying Light." Danny teases.
"I have no idea what you're talking about." Carmilla replies, flipping through her notes.
"Carmilla, when I came home from work last night you were passed out on the couch with the controller still in your lap." Danny says.
"I was on Netflix."
"The loading screen was still up."
Carmilla sighs loudly.
"Whatever." She mutters as Danny tries not to laugh.
Danny almost drops her toothbrush as Carmilla lightly elbows her in the side.
"'cuse you." She mumbles around her mouth full of toothpaste.
"You're in my way." Carmilla says, reaching for her own toothbrush.
Danny waits until she's about to squeeze toothpaste on it before she elbows Carmilla right in the wrist. The toothpaste squirts all over Carmilla's hand and she sighs loudly.
"Dammit, Danny." Carmilla growls.
Danny gives her a messy toothpaste grin and Carmilla rolls her eyes.
"You're lucky I think you're cute." Carmilla says, shaking her head as she cleans off her hand.
"Because otherwise I'd drop you off at the pound somewhere."
Danny rolls her eyes and rinses her mouth out.
"I'd get adopted right away." She jokes, wiping her mouth off.
Carmilla reaches over and lightly shoves Danny's forehead.
"Nah. You shed too much." Carmilla teases.
"You're just mad because most people prefer dogs over cats." Danny teases back, winking as she turns to leave the bathroom.
"I AM NOT A CAT!" Carmilla yells after her, pointing her toothbrush at the empty doorway.
"That's a very cat thing to say." Danny calls out from the bedroom.
Carmilla grumbles to herself and goes back to brushing her teeth, a little more aggressively than before.
"Please tell me one of those is for me." Carmilla says, gesturing at the two coffee cups in Danny's hands.
Danny wordlessly hands over the vanilla latte and Carmilla gently takes it from her, leaning up to kiss Danny's cheek.
"How was class?" Danny asks as they walk toward the exit of the Cone building.
"Interesting. We talked about early Roman architecture." Carmilla replies after taking a sip of her coffee.
"Sounds impressive." Danny says, smiling.
"They had this whole system for building things, it's very cool." Carmilla explains.
"You should tell me everything tonight when I get home from work." Danny says. Carmilla grins at her.
"I will. I need the extra study time, anyway."
"When is your exam?" Danny asks, dodging a skateboarder on the sidewalk. Carmilla glares after the boy before turning back to Danny.
"Next week." She replies.
"How many chapters?"
"That's not too bad."
"No. But it is a lot of information." Carmilla says as she holds the door to the McDavid building open for Danny.
"I'm sure you'll do just fine." Danny reassures her.
"I think I will too." Carmilla agrees. Danny beams at her.
"This is my stop, I'll see you tonight?" Carmilla says, gesturing to her classroom.
"Of course." Danny leans down and briefly kisses her.
She watches as Carmilla walks away and into the classroom before turning and walking away.
Danny cuts herself off when she sees Carmilla sprawled out on the couch asleep wearing Danny's letterman jacket. She glances over at the tv and finds Bob's Burgers playing.
"Rough night." Danny whispers to herself.
She silently makes her way over to the couch and, as gently as she can, gathers Carmilla into her arms and carries her down the hall and to the bedroom. She slowly lowers her to the bed and then kicks off her own shoes and climbs in, settling behind Carmilla. Carmilla stirs slightly.
"Just me." Danny whispers, draping an arm over Carmilla's side.
Carmilla's breathing evens out and she's back asleep. Danny closes her eyes and follows soon after.
"I can't find my boots." Carmilla says, sliding past Danny in her socks.
"Did you check under the-"
"Bed? Yes, that was the first place I looked." Carmilla interrupts, running a hand through her hair. "Fuck. Shit. My hair."
Danny wordlessly pushes off from the kitchen counter and walks over to the couch. She drops down on all fours and pulls Carmilla's dressy boots out from under the couch.
"-couch." She finishes, holding them up.
"I love you." Carmilla says, taking the shoes out of Danny's hand and kissing her face over and over until Danny lightly shoves at her.
"Go fix your hair."
"MY HAIR!" Carmilla exclaims, looking panicked again.
She darts off to the bathroom, nearly colliding with the wall.
"What time is your interview?" Danny calls after her.
"Four!" Carmilla calls back.
Danny waits patiently in the living room and minutes later, Carmilla comes dashing back in with her hair straightened.
"Can you get this..." She trails off, gesturing at the necklace she wore to prom dangling from one of her fingers.
"Turn around." Danny instructs.
Carmilla does and Danny quickly fastens the necklace around her neck.
"There. This is for that barista job, right?" Danny asks.
"Yeah. I really hope I get it because they have live jazz music on the weekends. Plus. Free coffee." Carmilla replies. "How do I look?"
"Stunning." Danny replies, grinning at her.
"Good." Carmilla says, grinning back. "Wish me luck."
She leans down and kisses Danny's cheek, wincing when she notices the lipstick mark. She wipes it away with her thumb, making Danny roll her eyes.
"You don't need luck. But good luck anyway. Stop that, I'll get it." Danny replies, batting Carmilla's hand away.
"I'll see you later!" Carmilla calls over her shoulder, bolting to the door.
Danny smiles, rubbing at her cheek.
"When are you coming home?" Laura asks, sighing.
"Thanksgiving. You'll be fine." Danny replies, shaking her head and taking another bite of her sandwich.
"It's so boring here. There's nobody to go to movies with." Laura complains.
"Go with Elsie."
Laura glares at her.
"You know perfectly well I'm not doing that."
"If you would just talk to her-"
"Danny, it took me months to go on a date with you and you were the one that asked me!" Laura interrupts.
"It doesn't have to be a date. Just ask her if she wants to go see that new movie with Anna Kendrick in it because you want to see it. She'll say yes." Danny says.
Laura is quiet for a few moments.
"It's just weird without you guys." She admits.
"We miss you too, Shortstack. And not just me and Carm. Perry and I were talking about you the other day too." Danny says, smiling.
"I think I'm going to apply to Harvard." Laura blurts out.
"Wait, really?" Danny asks, pausing with her water bottle halfway to her mouth.
"Yeah. I know my dad doesn't want me to go out of state but...I really want to." Laura replies, looking down at her keyboard.
"You should apply." Danny says.
"Definitely. It's nice being in a city. I've never been to Boston, though."
Laura smiles at her.
"If I take a campus tour, you and Carmilla should come too."
"I like that idea."
"Have you seen my hoodie?"
"Dryer. Have you seen my grey jeans?"
"In the desk chair."
Danny tugs her hoodie on and ducks back into the bedroom to find Carmilla zipping up her jeans.
"Carm, that's my bra you're wearing."
Carmilla looks down at herself.
"Yeah, you didn't notice?"
"Danny, we both own like eighteen black bras and yours aren't that much smaller than mine." Carmilla replies, swiftly unhooking it and tugging it off.
Danny laughs and reaches for her German textbook off the desk, cramming it into her bag. Carmilla changes quickly and then grabs her shirt off the bed.
"You laugh now, but wait until you do the same thing." She says, pointing at Danny as Danny zips up her bag.
"I doubt I will." Danny replies, sticking out her tongue. Carmilla rolls her eyes.
"Come on, Gingersnap. We're going to miss the metro."
"I'll trade you half my fries for some of your onion rings."
"Dream on, Karnstein."
"Ugh, fine. Here."
Carmilla grins as Danny slides her plate over.
"That always works with you." She says, snagging a few of the onion rings. Danny rolls her eyes.
"Not always." She grumbles.
Carmilla drops a handful of fries onto Danny's plate and slides it back.
"It worked that one time to get you to give me a lap da-"
"You said you wouldn't bring that up again!" Danny interjects, ears burning.
"It was sexy as hell, of course I'm going to bring it up again." Carmilla says, winking.
"Not in public." Danny says, looking around the caf.
"Nobody is listening to us." Carmilla says.
Danny sighs and leans back in her chair.
"We should probably leave soon, anyway. Class." She says. Carmilla nods and eats her last onion ring.
"I've got a long walk back to the library."
"You could just go back home instead of waiting on me?" Danny offers. Carmilla shakes her head.
"I'd fall asleep on the couch again. Plus, I'd kind of miss you if I rode home by myself." She admits.
Danny grins and shoves the last of her onion rings over to Carmilla, laughing as her eyes light up.
Perry sighs dramatically.
"Alright, spill. What's wrong with you." Danny asks, shifting the laptop onto her lap.
"The hockey team here is terrible." Perry says. Danny laughs.
"You kind of knew it would be going in."
"Yeah, I just didn't know how much. They have no defense so I keep getting swarmed and then when they lose, they try to act like it's my fault." Perry grumbles.
"What does the coach say?"
"She's new. She tries to be diplomatic but...it doesn't work out too well." Perry replies, shaking her head.
"Have you tried telling her?"
"I've honestly considered just quitting. I'm not on scholarship and it's stressing me out more than it's helping me de-stress at this point." Perry says.
"Well, if it's not making you happy then maybe you should." Danny says.
"I'll give it a little longer. See where we're at after break." Perry replies.
"Oh my god, Danny, did I tell you that Lafontaine and I got lost in Hell's Kitchen?"
"Guess what!" Carmilla exclaims, leaping onto the bed and half on top of Danny.
"What?" Danny asks, rolling over and closing her book as Carmilla climbs on top of her.
"I got the job." She says, grinning.
"Babe, that's amazing!" Danny replies, grinning back at her.
"I'm kind of excited." Carmilla admits.
Danny slips her arms around Carmilla's waist and tugs her down further. She kisses her once, twice, three times before pulling back.
"I think we should celebrate." She murmurs.
"I think you should take my pants off." Carmilla whispers back.
Danny instantly flips Carmilla over onto her back and reaches for her belt.
Danny tugs the blanket from the back of the couch onto Carmilla and herself as Carmilla resettles against her chest.
"Why wouldn't you de-vein your shrimp? That's disgusting." Carmilla mutters.
Danny laughs and rubs her hand down Carmilla's back.
"Think you could do better?" She asks. Carmilla scoffs.
"Than this idiot? Absolutely."
"I bet you could too." Danny agrees.
"You aren't even paying attention." Carmilla says, trying not to smile.
"You have my attention." Danny replies.
"Oh my god." Carmilla mutters.
"What? It's true."
Carmilla smiles and rolls her eyes. She turns her head slightly and kisses Danny's shoulder before turning back to the tv.
"Nerd." She mutters, making Danny laugh. "Oh dammit, the girl forgot to use the dragonfuit."
"Now who's the nerd?" Danny teases.
"Shut up." Carmilla grumbles.
A few moments pass by as the show cuts to commercials. Danny can tell Carmilla's thinking about something. Finally, Carmilla speaks.
"I love you." She whispers.
"I love you too." Danny replies.
Carmilla doesn't say anything else, even when the guy who didn't de-vein is shrimp is chopped. Instead, she keeps her mouth pressed against Danny's shoulder until they decide to go to bed.
"How was your first day?" Danny asks as Carmilla kicks off her shoes.
"Pretty great, actually. My manager is this really cool hippie guy named Ted and none of my co-workers seem like assholes, so. That's always good." She replies, dropping down onto the couch next to Danny.
Danny pauses her game and drapes her arm over Carmilla's shoulders, making her smile.
"That's a good start." She says.
"The coffee orders are all pretty simple too. It's nice."
"So no massive screw ups?" Danny asks.
"Not this time." Carmilla replies, smiling.
"What do you want for dinner?" Danny asks.
Carmilla stands up and stretches.
"A shower. And then some pizza." She replies.
"You go hop in the shower, I'll order the pizza." Danny says.
Carmilla smirks at her before stripping off her shirt.
"And then you should join me." She says.
She tosses her shirt at Danny's face before turning and disappearing down the hall.
"Where did it go?"
"Will you calm-"
"Seriously, where did it go?"
"It's just a bug, calm down."
Danny glares over at Carmilla.
"It's a fucking centipede." She growls.
Carmilla laughs and holds up her hands.
"Okay, fine. Miss Amazonian Warrior is terrified of a centipede."
"They're creepy, okay? Will you just kill it already?"
"I don't know where it went."
Danny groans and covers her face.
"I'm trying, you big baby." Carmilla mutters, scanning the living room for any sign of the critter.
She spots it crawling near Danny's foot and pounces.
"There. Got it." Carmilla says, holding up the wadded up paper towel.
"You don't want to see it?"
Carmilla laughs and throws the paper towel away as Danny relaxes.
"I never figured I'd have to be the one to kill the bugs."
"Centipedes." Danny corrects, rolling her eyes.
"You know what today is?" Danny whispers as Carmilla runs her fingers through Danny's hair.
"One whole year since I kissed you and we started this thing." Carmilla whispers back.
Danny smiles and kisses Carmilla's bare stomach.
"Are you happy?" She asks.
"I am. Are you?"
Carmilla grins and lightly scratches at Danny's back.
"What do you want to do today?" Danny asks.
"I already have a plan." Carmilla replies.
"Does it involve clothes?" Danny asks, kissing Carmilla's hip.
"Later." Carmilla replies, tugging on Danny's shoulders. "But right now, no."
"Where are we going?" Danny asks, as Carmilla leads her down the sidewalk.
"I'm honestly shocked you haven't picked up on it yet." Carmilla replies.
"Well, we already ate dinner at our favorite Italian place so...I have no idea." Danny says.
Carmilla just grins at her.
A few minutes later and Danny's face is lighting up as she recognizes where they are.
"The Air and Space museum?"
"Not that I'm complaining but...why here?" Danny asks.
"Do you remember that night in your basement? How you told me you came here when you were a kid and how it made you feel?" Carmilla asks, pausing.
"Watching your face while you spoke about it...I don't know. You made me feel like I wasn't alone anymore." Carmilla whispers.
"Carmilla." Danny whispers, her voice trembling like the flutters in her chest.
Carmilla's lips are on hers. The kiss is soft and sweet and Danny can feel the love radiating between them. Carmilla slowly pulls back after a moment.
"Come on, let's go inside. I want you to show me everything." She says, reaching for Danny's hand.
"What are you thinking?" Danny whispers.
They're stretched out on their bed after getting home from the museum.
"If I tell you something, do you promise not to laugh?" Carmilla asks.
"Of course." Danny replies.
Carmilla is silent for a few moments before speaking:
“I never really understood the point of romance. I thought falling in love was only something that happens in those cheesy romance movies Laura made me watch all the time. I thought love was fiction. Why would you ever want to give another person a piece of your heart? I don’t know, it just seemed really stupid to me.” She shrugs, fidgeting with the drawstring of Danny’s hoodie.
“But then I met you. And everything just kind of fell into place. And I realized, oh, this is why. You don’t just have a piece of my heart…you have all of it.”
Danny gently rolls Carmilla over onto her back.
"You have every piece of my heart too, Carmilla Karnstein." Danny whispers.
Carmilla kisses her then, hard and desperate. Her hands grab at the front of Danny's hoodie, pulling her into her as much as she can. Danny kisses her back, over and over and over again until Carmilla's hands slide under her hoodie and scratch at her bare skin.
Danny pulls away just long enough to yank her hoodie over her head and then she's back and kissing Carmilla again. Carmilla's hands slide to Danny's shoulders and she tightens her grip as Danny quickly unbuttons Carmilla's pants. She shifts to tug them off and when she does, Carmilla lightly grabs her face.
"Go slow this time."
Danny kisses her again, slow and deep, and Carmilla's hands slide from her jaw to the back of her neck.
Danny pauses mid-sentence when she sees Carmilla curled up asleep on the couch. She's wearing Danny's hoodie from last night and her eyebrows are knitted together. Danny carefully makes her way over to the couch. Kneeling down, she lightly touches Carmilla's arm.
Carmilla jerks awake with a yelp.
"Hey, easy, it's just me." Danny says, reaching to rub Carmilla's arm again.
"Sorry I was- I had-" She sighs.
"Nightmare?" Danny asks.
"Your mom?" Danny asks.
Carmilla nods again.
"What can I do?"
Carmilla shakes her head.
"I don't know." She replies, miserably.
She squeezes her eyes shut as Danny gently slips her arms around her.
"Come on, let's go lay down." Danny whispers, gathering her up into her arms.
"What about dinner?" Carmilla whispers, pressing her face against Danny's neck.
"I'll fix us something later." Danny replies, carrying her back toward the bedroom. "Right now we're focused on you."
Carmilla's grip tightens and Danny can't shake the feeling that something is really wrong.
"Oh why would you hide in there? He's just going to-"
Danny's complaint is cut off by the sound of a chainsaw tearing through the wall on the tv screen.
"Do that." Carmilla finishes for her, reaching for the popcorn on the floor next to them.
Danny was leaned back against the couch with Carmilla resting between her legs.
"Two down, three to go." Danny jokes.
"I bet the dark-haired guy gets it next." Carmilla says, gesturing at the tv.
"You're probably right." Danny agrees.
They both wince as one of the girls gets attacked through a door.
"Nevermind." They both say in unison.
"I don't understand why you like this movie." Danny mutters.
"It's the original Halloween. How can you not?" Carmilla asks, offended. Danny shrugs.
"He's not that scary."
"You're telling me that if Michael Myers showed up at the end of our bed at 3 in the morning, you wouldn't be freaked out?" Carmilla asks, turning to look at Danny.
"I mean, yeah, if anyone showed up at the end of our bed at 3 in the morning I'd be freaked out. But as far as horror movie villains go...he's just not that scary." Danny replies, reaching for the popcorn.
Carmilla moves the bowl away from her.
"Hey!" Danny exclaims.
"Not until you apologize to Mikey." Carmilla says, pointing at the tv screen.
"Are you serious?"
"Fine. I'm sorry I'm not that scared of you, Michael Myers." Danny mutters.
Carmilla slides the popcorn bowl back to Danny's hand.
"Okay, it's either Last House on the Left or something called Dead Silence." Danny reads out from the cable guide.
"Last House on the Left sucks, go with the other one." Carmilla says, leaning back against Danny.
"Okay." Danny says, hitting 'select.'
"What's this one about?" Carmilla asks.
"Something about some dude's wife dying and some creepy old lady." Danny summarizes from the info screen.
"Excellent." Carmilla replies.
"How could they not mention it once!?" Carmilla yelps, her voice slightly muffled by the pillow she's holding over her face. "Killer ventriloquist dummy and they don't even mention it ONCE."
"I don't know." Danny replies, trying not to laugh.
"Barely 10 minutes in and someone is getting murdered by a fuckin' ventriloquist dummy." Carmilla whines.
Danny loses her battle and shakes with silent laughter.
"It's not funny, Daniella." Carmilla scolds, yanking the pillow away and glaring.
"I'm not laughing at you, I'm laughing at the image of you with your face practically shoved into the pillowcase." Danny says, climbing onto the bed.
"Did you lock all the doors and windows?" Carmilla asks.
"Yes." Danny promises, reaching for the lamp.
"Leave the light on?" Carmilla asks.
"Why do- okay, okay." Danny says as Carmilla gives her a look.
She tugs Danny down on top of her.
"What are you doing?" Danny asks.
"Using you as a shield." Carmilla replies.
"Okay, come here."
Danny rolls over and pulls Carmilla into her arms.
"If any ventriloquist dummy bursts through that door, I'll kick his ass." Danny promises.
"You'd better." Carmilla mumbles.
Chapter 4: November I.
"Babe, have you seen where I put my glasses?" Carmilla calls out, throwing the pillows off of the couch.
"Did you check the bathroom?" Danny asks her from the kitchen.
Carmilla spins around and darts into the bathroom.
"Found them!" She exclaims, re-emerging while sliding her reading glasses onto her face.
"Do you want some popcorn? I kind of want some popcorn." Danny asks, staring into one of their cabinets.
"I could go for some popcorn." Carmilla says, laughing as she reaches for her British Lit textbook.
"Good because I was going to make it anyway and eating an entire bag of popcorn by myself this late at night is probably a terrible idea." Danny replies, grabbing a bag of popcorn and tearing off the cellophane wrapper.
"Don't worry, Gingersnap, I'll stop you before you give yourself a stomach ache." Carmilla says, shaking her head.
"Aw, you do care." Danny calls out as the popcorn in the microwave begins to pop.
"No, I just don't want to deal with your incessant whining." Carmilla jokes, grinning as Danny rolls her eyes.
"Like you're any better. Might I remind you of that time you ate way too many Swedish Fish and spent the next twelve hours taking up my entire bed and groaning?" Danny counters.
"I have no idea what you're talking about." Carmilla replies, hiding her face with her textbook.
Danny's hand suddenly appears, covering the paragraph she was pretending to read. Danny lightly pushes the book down into Carmilla lap and stares at her.
"What?" Carmilla asks, trying not to smile.
"You are the most ridiculous-"
Before Danny can finish her sentence, Carmilla's kissing her.
"My popcorn." Danny mumbles as Carmilla dumps her textbook to the floor and slides her hands under Danny's shirt.
"Fuck the popcorn and fuck me." Carmilla says.
Danny doesn't need to be told twice.
Danny looks up from her Physics homework as Carmilla closes the door behind her.
"Hey, how was work?" She asks. Carmilla pauses in taking off her jacket.
"I got this weird phone call." Carmilla replies. Danny sits up a little straighter.
"It was a restricted number and when I answered it was just static for about two seconds before whoever it was hung up." Carmilla explains, taking her jacket off and tossing it onto one of the bar stools.
Danny's eyebrows furrow.
"A restricted number?" Danny asks. Carmilla nods.
"It was probably some sort of telemarketer thing." Carmilla reasons.
"Yeah, I bet that was it." Danny agrees.
Carmilla makes her way over to the couch and stretches her legs out across Danny's lap. Danny absentmindedly strokes the skin of Carmilla ankle for a few minutes while Carmilla flips through the channels on the tv.
"You don't think it was..." Danny trails off after a few more moments of silence.
"She doesn't have my number." Carmilla replies, tensing up.
"Okay." Danny says.
Carmilla sits up suddenly, shifting so that she's leaning against Danny's side. Danny drapes her arm over Carmilla's shoulders and pulls her in closer.
"You okay?" Danny asks.
Carmilla doesn't answer. She just rests her head on Danny's shoulder and closes her eyes.
"Do you want my pickles?"
Danny tosses the pickles from her ham sandwich into the paper bag and stretches her legs out under the table. Carmilla heaves a sigh and pokes at her salad with her fork. Danny pauses, sandwich halfway to her mouth and raises an eyebrow.
"Yeah, yeah I just..." Carmilla trails off and shakes her head.
"I'm sorry." Carmilla smiles up at her. "I just got really tired all of a sudden."
"Do you want me to walk you home?" Danny asks, setting her sandwich back down.
"No. No, I'm okay. I think it's just my brain. Too much reading." Carmilla replies honestly, taking a bite of her salad.
Danny watches her for a few moments before returning to her sandwich.
"When's your Physics exam?" Carmilla asks.
"Not until next week. How about that British Lit paper you have to write?"
"Five pages due next Tuesday. I don't even want to think about it, honestly." She replies.
"I can help you." Danny says, taking a bite of her sandwich. Carmilla smiles at her.
"Just like old times." She teases.
Danny's jarred awake by something shoving into her back.
Her eyes snap open and she takes a moment to get her bearings back. She's lying on her stomach in the middle of their living room. She remembers studying for her Physics exam next week before apparently dozing off on the floor.
Something presses into her back again and she tries to sit up, but a weight across her back stops her.
She looks over her shoulder as much as she can from her position and finds Carmilla sprawled out sideways across her back. Carmilla's arm jerks and Danny feels the shoving sensation that woke her up. Carmilla's eyebrows are knitted together and a soft whimpering sound escapes her lips.
"Carm." Danny whispers.
Carmilla doesn't react other than clenching her fists against Danny's shoulders.
"Carmilla." She says, louder.
Carmilla whines again.
Danny gently rolls over, sending Carmilla sliding to the floor with another whimper.
"Carm, baby?" Danny whispers, reaching out and lightly touching Carmilla's face.
Suddenly Carmilla's eyes snap open with a sharp intake of breath and Danny feels Carmilla's body tense. With lightening fast reflexes born from years of playing hockey, she manages to catch Carmilla's fist before it smashes into her jaw.
Carmilla's eyes widen as Danny lightly squeezes her fist.
"What..." Carmilla whispers, trailing off.
"It's okay, you were having a nightmare." Danny whispers back.
Carmilla's fist relaxes and Danny laces their fingers together.
"It's okay." She repeats.
"Jesus." Carmilla breathes out.
"What do you need me to do?" Danny asks.
Carmilla just stares at her.
"Carm?" Danny asks, squeezing her hand.
Carmilla shakes her head.
"It's not real. You're with me. Whatever's in your head isn't real, it was just a bad dream." Danny assures her.
Carmilla reaches out her free hand and lightly traces down Danny's nose and across her mouth. Realization suddenly dawns on her face.
"Danny, oh my god." She says, starting to sit up. Danny gently stops her.
"It's okay, you were dreaming and you weren't awake yet."
"I almost hit you." Carmilla whispers, upset and shaking her head.
"You were still sleeping it's not your fault." Danny replies, squeezing her hand again.
"I don't know what's wrong with me." Carmilla says.
"It was just a nightmare."
"Yeah, and I almost hit you when you tried to wake me up." Carmilla argues, pulling her hand out of Danny's and covering her face.
"Don't tell me it's okay because it's not." Carmilla interrupts.
Danny stays quiet as she lowers herself back down to the floor next to Carmilla and they lay in silence for so long, Danny loses track of the time.
Danny freezes in the middle of brushing her teeth as the door to the bathroom swings open.
"I'm making grilled cheese sandwiches, you want one?" Carmilla asks, leaning in the doorway.
"That's my shirt." Danny says, the words slightly muffled by her toothbrush.
Carmilla looks down at the faded blue t-shirt she's wearing.
"I know. Sandwich or no sandwich?"
"It looks good on you." Danny says, leaning over the sink to rinse her mouth.
"You know what a grilled cheese sandwich is, right? Two pieces of bread, buttered, cheese in the middle, toasted in a frying pan?" Carmilla teases.
Danny doesn't answer, instead she wipes her mouth off on her towel before turning back around to face Carmilla.
"Do you need me to draw you a picture because I don't have the patience for that so this is your last-"
Carmilla's cut off by Danny's lips pressing against hers.
Danny kisses her softly for a few moments before pulling back.
"Keep the shirt and yes to the sandwich." Danny mumbles against her lips.
She plants one last quick kiss on Carmilla's cheek before ducking out of the bathroom, leaving Carmilla half dazed.
"I quit the hockey team."
Danny almost chokes on her drink.
"You did? I thought you were going to wait until after break?"
"I couldn't deal with it anymore. Too much crap, you know?" Perry replies, sighing.
"You miss it already, don't you?" Danny asks.
"Playing? Yes. That team? No." Perry says, shaking her head.
"It'll work out. You'll figure out something better." Danny assures her.
"How about you? How are things on your end?"
"Stressful. But I mean, I have Carmilla harassing me constantly so that helps keep me on my toes." Danny says, winking at Perry as Carmilla flips her the bird from across the room.
Perry laughs her big booming laugh, making Danny's smile widen.
"Glad to hear some things haven't changed." Perry jokes.
"Speaking of, where did you and LaF get lost this time?"
"Oh my god, you'll never guess."
Carmilla is stretched out on Danny's side of the bed when Danny gets home.
She's not sleeping, she's just lying there curled around Danny's pillow. Danny pauses in the doorway to the bedroom.
"Everything okay?" She asks.
Carmilla looks over at her.
"Yeah. Yeah, I'm just tired."
Danny nods and waits to see if Carmilla will say more, but she doesn't.
"You'd tell me if something was wrong, right?" She asks.
Carmilla sits up slowly.
"I don't know what's wrong." Carmilla admits.
"Is it the nightmares again?"
"I honestly don't know."
Danny hovers in the doorway, and Carmilla seems to sense her hesitation.
"Come here." She says, shifting the pillow out of the way.
Danny crosses the room and climbs into bed, sighing as Carmilla drapes an arm over her side and presses against her chest.
"I love you, you know that right?" Carmilla whispers.
"Of course I know that. I love you too." Danny replies, squeezing her a little closer.
Carmilla tightens her grip on Danny's side and closes her eyes.
"How many pages do you have left?"
"Two. How many problems left in your packet?"
"A lot more than two."
Carmilla laughs and looks over the top of her laptop at Danny. She starts to say something but is interrupted by the sound of her phone ringing. She grabs it off the coffee table and frowns.
"What?" Danny asks.
Carmilla holds up one finger and answers it.
"Seriously, who is this?"
She pulls the phone away from her ear and stares at it.
"What?" Danny asks again.
"That weird restricted number call again." Carmilla explains.
"Did they say anything?"
"No, it was just static."
Danny sits up and shifts her Physics book out of her lap.
"Maybe it's some kind of automated thing. Want me to look into it?"
Carmilla stares down at her phone.
"No. No, wait and see if it keeps happening and then we'll look into it." She replies.
Carmilla stares at her phone for a few more minutes before shrugging and setting it back down on the coffee table.
"Hey, Queen C, I wasn't expecting to see you!" Maddie exclaims, grinning on the laptop screen.
"Danny had to run to the bathroom." Carmilla explains, grinning back.
"Wait is that Carmilla?" Julie's voice sounds from off camera.
"Hey Julie." Carmilla says, laughing as Julie's head suddenly appears next to Maddie's.
"How've you been?" She asks.
"Buried under a mountain of homework." Carmilla replies, rolling her eyes.
"Oh man, tell me about it. I've been swamped with shit for this dumb sociology class I have to take. I'm an English major, why do I need to know this stuff?" Maddie says, shaking her head.
"It's not that dumb." Julie says.
"It's pretty dumb." Maddie counters. Carmilla laughs.
Danny suddenly drops into Carmilla's lap, making her almost drop the laptop into the floor.
"DANNY!" Carmilla yelps, shoving at the laughing girl's head.
"Hey, there you are!" Maddie says, laughing as Danny squirms her way into Carmilla's lap. Carmilla sighs, exasperated, and leans back to give her more room.
Danny shifts around so Carmilla can see the screen better.
"Hi." Danny says nonchalantly, sending Julie and Maddie into a fit of giggles.
"Hey loser." Maddie replies.
"How's life?" Danny asks.
"Eh." Maddie says.
"You?" Julie asks.
"Eh." Danny replies.
Carmilla rolls her eyes as the three crack up laughing.
"You're all ridiculous." She says.
"You love it." Danny replies, looking up at her.
"I tolerate it." Carmilla jokes, but she's trying not to smile.
"Do you need us to give you a minute?" Maddie teases, earning herself an elbow from Julie.
"Nah." Danny and Carmilla reply in unison.
"Hey!" Julie suddenly exclaims. "Did you guys hear that Betty's got a girlfriend?"
"Does she?" Danny replies.
"Yeah! Did you have any idea that she was into women?" Maddie asks.
"Not a clue." Danny lies.
Carmilla nearly dumps her into the floor.
"This assignment will be due next week." Professor Lindholm explains, turning back to the board.
Danny groans and drops her head to her desk.
"You're groaning? Now I have three projects due next week." Carmilla says, resting her hand on the back of Danny's head.
"Physics." Danny mumbles into her arm. Carmilla winces.
"Yeah, I get your point." She replies.
"We'll help each other out." Danny whispers as Lindholm turns back around.
"Deal." Carmilla replies, lightly shoving at Danny's head before picking her pen back up.
Carmilla's standing in the kitchen, in the middle of reading King Lear while waiting for her tea to heat up when suddenly her feet aren't touching the floor anymore.
"DANNY!" She yelps, nearly dropping her book into the sink as Danny flips her around so she's holding her.
"What do you think you're doing?"
Danny just grins at her.
"You gonna kiss me?" Carmilla asks, quirking an eyebrow.
Danny leans down and kisses her, softly at first, until she feels Carmilla's arms lock around her neck. The kisses deepen and become more frantic. Danny hears Carmilla's book crash to the floor as Carmilla's nails dig into the skin at the back of her neck. She pulls back slightly.
Carmilla tugs her back down and kisses her again harder.
Carmilla looks up from her laptop and immediately closes it, launching to her feet.
"What's wrong? What happened?" She asks, as Danny continues to lean back against the door close to tears.
"I'm not feeling too good." Danny whispers.
Carmilla reaches up and gently brushes the hair out of Danny's face. Feeling how hot Danny's face is, she frowns.
"What's hurting?" She whispers.
"Everything." Danny replies, half laughing and half wincing.
"Okay, come on." Carmilla reaches out and takes Danny's hand.
She leads her back to the bedroom and guides her down into the bed.
"I'm going to go get you a cold washcloth, okay? Stay here."
Danny nods and rolls over on her side, kicking off her shoes before drawing her legs up. She lays there for what feels like hours, but is really only a few minutes, before Carmilla returns and presses something wet and cold against her face.
"I don't really know what- I mean, this is what they do in the movies." Carmilla says, holding the washcloth to Danny's cheek. Danny smiles weakly.
"It's okay, I think I just need to sleep it off." She replies.
She blinks sleepily up, Carmilla's worried face swimming in and out of view.
The last thing she hears is Carmilla humming something that sounds like a Billie Holiday song.
"I don't know what I'm doing, that's why I called you."
"She's been out for like six hours."
The floorboard in the hallway creaks.
"She just said everything hurt. Yeah. No, she's definitely running a fever. Should I take her to the doctor? I've never seen her sick before. It's usually just food related stomachaches, period cramps and the occasional migraine. This is- yeah."
The door to the bedroom opens and Danny can sense Carmilla standing over her, but she can't bring herself to open her eyes.
"Do you think I should call her par- okay, yeah no you're right. So just keep an eye on her and if she gets worse take her to the doctor? Okay. Yeah, okay. I can do that."
Another pause, longer this time.
"Maybe you should just text like, all of what you just said to me. Yeah."
Danny feels Carmilla's finger lightly tracing her nose.
"Okay. Thanks, Perry."
Carmilla hangs up the phone and gently kisses Danny's forehead.
Danny wants to open her eyes but she just can't.
She can feel Carmilla's fingers combing through her hair.
Her breathing against her face.
"I hope you're okay." Carmilla whispers.
She wants to tell her that no, she's not okay. She doesn't even have the energy to open her eyes.
"I love you." Carmilla whispers, her voice trembling a little.
Danny finally opens her eyes.
To total darkness.
She groans and shifts a little, feeling a warm weight resting on her chest.
"Carm?" She manages to croak out.
Carmilla jerks awake and sits up.
Danny feels her lean over and suddenly she's blinded by the lamp next to the bed.
She groans again and Carmilla winces.
"Sorry." Carmilla whispers.
Carmilla's hands press against Danny's cheek and forehead.
"You don't feel as hot." She whispers. "Perry said you should probably take some Motrin or something when you wake up, but to let you sleep it off for awhile."
"What time is it?" Danny asks.
Carmilla leans back over to the bedside table and checks her phone.
"A little after 3:00. You've been asleep for over twelve hours."
"I feel like shit."
"I was worried about you. I still am." She admits.
"I just need to sleep some more." Danny replies, lightly winding her arms around Carmilla's waist.
"Okay, go back to bed." Carmilla says, settling back down on Danny's chest. "Is it okay if I lay on you like this?"
This time when Danny wakes up, it's light outside and she's alone in bed.
She rolls over and slowly sits up. No aching pains all over and her massive headache has been reduced to a dull roar.
She can hear the tv in the living room, so she carefully slides out of bed and stands up. She doesn't sway on the spot or feel like she's going to keel over like she did on the way home yesterday. Good sign.
She slowly makes her way down the hall and into the living room to find Carmilla sitting on the couch watching Chopped.
"Hey." She whispers, her voice still a little raw.
Carmilla jumps to her feet.
She slips her arms around Danny's waist and hugs her.
"Yeah, what time is it?"
"Jesus." Danny whispers. "I've done nothing but sleep."
Carmilla pulls back a bit and reaches up to stroke Danny's cheek.
"You've been sick. You should probably stay home tomorrow, just in case."
"I don't want to miss class."
"You also don't want to pass out on campus." Carmilla argues, lightly pinching Danny's nose. "Come on, sit down."
She tugs on Danny's arms until she sits on the couch next to her. Danny drops her head to Carmilla's shoulder.
"If you're still tired, you should go back to bed." Carmilla murmurs, pressing her mouth against Danny's head.
"I don't think I could sleep I'm just..." Danny trails off with a shrug.
"Physically exhausted?" Carmilla finishes for her. Danny nods.
"I just want to be over whatever this is." She says.
"Maybe you should go to the doctor tomorrow." Carmilla suggests.
"I will if it doesn't get any better." Danny says. Carmilla laughs.
"Your mother is going to kill me if I bring you back for Thanksgiving sick as a dog." She says, kissing the top of Danny's head.
"I'm not going to be sick for Thanksgiving. I refuse."
"I don't think that's how it works, Gingersnap."
The door to the apartment bangs open and Carmilla appears, arms full with take-out boxes.
"Okay, I stopped by Carol's Diner and got all of our favorites." She says, kicking the door closed behind her as Danny throws the blanket off and stands up.
"Here, let me help you with that." Danny offers, Carmilla shakes her head and gently sets the boxes down on the counter.
"I got it, you sit back down. I'll bring everything to you."
Danny flops back down on the couch.
"Maybe I should get sick more often if it means you're going to be this cute about it."
Carmilla rolls her eyes and flips Danny off, making her laugh.
A few minutes later, Carmilla brings two plates of food into the living room and hands one to Danny.
"God, this smells amazing." Danny says, taking the fork sticking out of Carmilla's back pocket.
Carmilla drops into the seat beside of her and grins.
"How was your day off?"
"Weird." Danny replies, taking a bite of her chicken pie. "Like, it felt good because I obviously needed to recover but...still. Weird. I kept thinking I should be doing something productive."
"Technically, you were doing something productive. You were getting better." Carmilla says, nodding at her. Danny laughs.
"You're so smart."
"Duh, of course I am." Carmilla replies, winking.
Danny wakes with a start.
She can hear a whimpering sound coming from beside of her and she rolls over.
"Carm?" She whispers.
The light from the impending sunrise lights the room enough and she can see Carmilla's eyebrow's knitted together. Her jaw is clenched and her fists are so tight, her knuckles are white.
"Carm, baby, wake up." She says, a little louder this time.
She remembers Carmilla almost punching her last time, so she refrains from touching her again.
"Carmilla!" She says again and this time Carmilla's eyes snap open.
She jolts awake, sitting up and looking wildly around the room.
"It's me, Danny. You're in our apartment in DC." Danny says.
Carmilla visibly relaxes and collapses back against the bed.
"They're getting worse...aren't they?" Danny asks softly.
Carmilla doesn't answer.
"Carm, I need you to talk to me."
"There's nothing to talk about, they're just nightmares." Carmilla replies, shaking her head and closing her eyes.
"Okay." Danny relents, not wanting to push the issue even though she can tell Carmilla's lying.
They lie there in silence for a few moments before Carmilla rolls over and rests her head against Danny's chest. Danny's arms immediately wrap around Carmilla's body and she pulls her closer.
"Okay." Danny repeats.
"Why is it so fucking cold in here!?" Carmilla exclaims, grabbing the quilt from the back of the couch and yanking it over her body.
Danny fiddles with the thermostat and frowns.
"Uh, babe?" Danny calls out.
"I think the heat is broken."
Carmilla jumps off the couch with a growl.
"Are you fucking kidding me?"
Danny gestures at the thermostat as Carmilla appears, fuming, at her shoulder.
"It's set at like, 65, but it's registering 60."
Carmilla bangs her head against Danny's back repeatedly.
"Can you call someone to fix it?" She mumbles after she feels Danny start to laugh.
"I'll call Mr. O'Connor." Danny replies, moving for the phone.
"Hurry before I turn into a fucking freezepop."
"What are you doing?"
"I have to go to the bathroom."
"No. You're my portable space heater, if you get up, I'm going to freeze."
"Carmilla, seriously, I drank a lot of water."
Carmilla grumbles to herself and shifts out of Danny's lap, letting her slide off of the couch.
"Oh, for crying out loud." Danny laughs, shaking her head and jogging to the bathroom.
"How long has it been?" Carmilla asks, pressing her forehead to Danny's back.
"About twelve hours." Danny replies, placing her phone back on the bed-side table.
"Mr. O'Connor said it'd probably be a whole day before someone could fix it." Danny says, trying not to laugh as Carmilla slides her hands underneath her shirt.
"You should warm me up." Carmilla suggests.
"I thought that's what I was doing." Danny replies, smirking to herself.
Carmilla digs her nails into the skin of Danny's stomach and scratches down to the top of her sweatpants.
"I've got a better way." She says. Danny rolls over.
"Show me, then."
Carmilla practically growls as she tugs Danny on top of her.
"You're blocking my water intake."
"'Water intake' Carmilla, seriously?"
"Can't you duck or something?"
"It was your idea to shower together."
"Yes, I am aware of that Daniella."
"Hand me my shampoo."
"Reach for it yourself."
Danny sighs and reaches around Carmilla's back for her shampoo, bracing herself for what she knows is about to happen. Sure enough, Carmilla grips her wrists and presses them above her head and against the shower wall.
"I knew you were going to do that." Danny whispers as Carmilla leans up and rests her mouth against her jaw.
"Why didn't you stop me, then?" Carmilla mumbles, lightly biting down on Danny's jaw.
"Maybe I wanted you to.
"I'm going to need more than maybe."
Danny laughs and tries to break free of Carmilla's hands, but Carmilla just tightens her grip.
"Normally, I would give you more than maybe but right now it's freezing and we're going to run out of hot water soon."
Carmilla sighs and bites down gently on Danny's neck before releasing her hands and pulling away.
"I hate it when you're right."
"I hate it when I'm right too, now hand me my shampoo."
Carmilla shoves the shampoo bottle, hard, into Danny's stomach. Danny laughs.
"Once we get this heat fixed I expect you to make this up to me." Carmilla says.
"Oh believe me, I will."
"What was that noise?"
"That noise? Did you hear that noise?"
"Danny, seriously, get up."
"Danny, I think the heat is back on."
Danny opens one eye at this.
"Wait." She mumbles, listening intently.
Her other eye snaps open and she sits up, nearly throwing Carmilla off the bed.
"It is!" She yelps, rolling off the bed and reaching to feel the hot air coming out of the vent in their room. "It is!"
"Oh thank god." Carmilla mutters, flopping back down into the spot Danny vacated.
Danny strips off her hoodie and dives back into the bed.
"Do you really think you need that many pairs of socks? We're just going to my parents' for the weekend." Danny teases. Carmilla glares at her.
"I like to be prepared."
Danny shakes her head and folds up one of her shirts, laying it in her suitcase.
"Whatever you say."
"What?" Danny looks back over at Carmilla, who has stopped packing and is now staring at her suitcase.
"Why? It's just my parents."
"What if..." Carmilla trails off, unable to finish her thought.
She doesn't need to.
Danny sets the shirt she was about to fold back down and crosses the room to where Carmilla is standing. She wraps her arms around her and kisses the side of her head.
"She can't get to you."
"Don't be so sure."
"I am sure."
Danny squeezes her tighter. Carmilla turns in her arms and presses her face against Danny's shoulder.
"There's my girls!" Beatrice exclaims, flinging open the door.
"Hey ma." Danny says, grinning as her mother tugs her and Carmilla down into a huge hug.
"It's so good to see you both, but you both look so skinny! Come in, come in. Rápido!"
Danny rolls her eyes and leads the way into the house, Carmilla laughing behind her.
"Hey guys!" Derek calls out from the couch.
"Hey Mr. Law- Derek."
Derek chuckles and stands.
"Do you need help with those?" He asks, gesturing toward their suitcases.
"No, we got it. Thanks." Danny replies as Carmilla shakes her head.
"Go put your things down and come to the kitchen, dinner is almost ready." Beatrice calls out from the kitchen.
"Race you upstairs!" Carmilla says, bolting.
"No fair!" Danny yells, chasing after her.
"How are your classes going?" Derek asks, reaching for his drink.
They're all sitting around the kitchen table after dinner.
"Pretty good, I'm making all A's and B's so I mean...I can't complain." Danny replies, looking over at Carmilla.
"Yeah, mine are going well too. Thank you, by the way, for all the help with Art History." Carmilla says.
"Anytime, kiddo." He replies.
"How about any clubs? Have you joined any social things?" Beatrice asks.
"No." Danny and Carmilla reply in unison.
"There's not really-"
"We have work-"
"Okay, okay." She says, holding up her hands.
"What time is everyone coming over tomorrow?" Danny asks, leaning back in her chair.
"Sometime after noon." Beatrice replies. "You know how your father's family is."
Danny laughs as her father pretends to look offended.
"Just what are you saying?" He asks.
"Tarde. Siempre." Beatrice replies, pointing at him.
"Always late." Carmilla translates. Beatrice turns to look at her.
Carmilla smiles back at her nervously as Beatrice continues to stare.
"I'm exhausted, I'm going to go get ready for bed." Derek says, pushing back from the table.
"I'll get the dishes." Danny says.
"I'll help." Carmilla says, standing quickly.
"Daniella, will you take the trash out?" Beatrice asks.
Danny groans but grabs the trash bag anyway, intentionally dragging her feet the whole way to the front door. As soon as she's out of earshot, Beatrice turns to Carmilla.
"Tú estudias Español?" She asks.
"A little." Carmilla replies, blushing.
"You do know, you just aren't telling me. Por qué?"
"I just...you and Danny speak it and so I want to be able to keep up with you both." Carmilla replies, staring down at the sink.
It's quiet for a few moments and suddenly Carmilla feels Beatrice's arms slip around her waist.
"Te quiero. Te quiero, mucho." Beatrice whispers.
Before Carmilla can respond, Danny bounds back in the front door and Beatrice moves away from her.
"Finished?" Danny asks, pausing in the doorway to the kitchen.
"Yes." Carmilla replies, drying her hands off on the dishtowel and walking over to her.
"We're going to head upstairs, okay ma?" Danny asks.
"Of course. Goodnight." Beatrice replies, smiling at them both.
"Everything okay?" Danny asks as she and Carmilla head upstairs.
Carmilla just smiles.
"So your family is..."
Danny's standing with Carmilla in the kitchen, staying out of the way of Danny's family.
"Loud? But...in a good way."
"Your Uncle Dave seems really funny though."
"Yeah, he and my dad are twins."
Carmilla almost chokes on her soda.
"Yeah." Danny replies, smiling.
"Now that you mention it, I can kind of see it. Is Sam older or younger?" Carmilla asks, leaning back against the counter.
"Sam's the baby. They have an older brother, Eric, but he lives in Denmark."
Carmilla shakes her head.
"Your family is all over the place."
"Oh, you have no idea."
"Well, it's official." Danny says, flopping down next to Carmilla on the couch. "Everyone with the last name of Lawrence is in love with you."
Carmilla laughs and shoves Danny sideways.
"It's true. You got the Holy Terrors to sit still for longer than five minutes."
"Are you talking about Sam's kids? They were like glued to me, it was weird."
"It was cute."
Carmilla rolls her eyes.
"They were pretty cute."
"You say that now, wait until you meet them when they're all hyped up on sugar." Danny says, resting her hand on Carmilla's thigh and squeezing.
Carmilla rests her hand on top of Danny's and smiles. Her phone buzzing in her pocket makes her jump.
She digs her phone out and frowns.
She pauses for a few moments before hanging up with a scowl.
"Again?" Danny asks.
Carmilla nods and glares down at her phone.
"Maybe we should call the phone company?"
"No, I'm just going to start ignoring them."
"If your sure."
Carmilla nods and leans her head against Danny's shoulder.
"Oh my god, you guys have no idea how much I've missed you." Laura gushes, stretching her legs out across Danny and Carmilla's laps.
"You missed us?"
Laura rolls her eyes.
"Listen, if you two start doing that weird talking in unison thing that LaF and Perry do I'm going to disown you." She says, pointing at them both.
Danny laughs as Carmilla rolls her eyes.
"Jesus, you're demanding. First you make us bring you cookies and now you're telling us we can't speak a certain way." Carmilla teases.
"Whatever, Jerkface." Laura replies, lightly shoving at Carmilla's shoulder. "Admit it, you missed me too."
"We did." Danny says.
"Danny did. I was fine." Carmilla corrects.
"Oh for god's sake, Carm, tell her you missed her before she starts making the puppy face." Danny says, elbowing Carmilla.
"Fine! God! I missed you, you tiny little peanut." Carmilla grumbles.
"You should come visit us sometime. We can take you to all the museums and show you around campus." Danny says.
"I really want to. Maybe over Christmas break?"
"Make sure you bring warm clothes because if you freeze into a popsicle I'm not carrying you around." Carmilla jokes, grinning over at Laura.
"Ass." Laura says, grinning back.
"I wish we could stay longer this weekend but we have to get back to work." Danny says.
"Well, we've got the rest of today." Laura replies.
"I'm picking the movie this time." Carmilla interjects. "I refuse to sit through Dirty Dancing again."
"Excuse me, just last week you asked me to do the Patrick Swayze dance with you-"
"THAT. Does not- I have no idea what you're talking about." Carmilla interrupts Danny, glaring at her.
Danny finishes loading the last bit of laundry into the washer and closes the lid. She closes the door to the bathroom and heads back to the bedroom where Carmilla is stretched out in one of Danny's old hockey hoodies.
"You okay?" Danny asks, pausing in the doorway.
"Yeah I- yeah." Carmilla replies, shaking her head and resettling against her pillow.
"You sure? You look upset."
Carmilla just nods.
"Okay." Danny whispers.
She turns to leave but Carmilla stops her.
She turns back around.
"Will you come lay with me for a little while?" Carmilla asks, staring up at the ceiling.
Danny makes her way across the floor before gently climbing into the bed beside Carmilla. She settles in next to her and Carmilla immediately rolls over, resting her head against Danny's chest.
"I think I'm just tired." Carmilla whispers after a few minutes of silence.
"It's okay." Danny assures her.
She feels Carmilla shoulders tremble slightly and she squeezes her tighter.
"It's okay." She repeats.
But she's not sure she believes herself anymore.
Chapter 5: Thank you
I know it's been a long time since I've updated this fic but I just wanted to officially announce its ending. Unfortunately the hard drive that had its outline and notes failed and I was unable to recover its contents. I lost everything. I had always hoped to come back and finish it, if not for you then at least for myself. It seems that won't be the case.
I can tell you that the mysterious caller was indeed Carmilla's mother, Danny and Carmilla would have ended up married with an adopted cat named Goddard that Carmila would have fought Danny on keeping but wound up bonding with. Danny would have gone on to work for NASA and Carmilla would have become a successful artist.
Thank you all for giving me some of the best memories of my life, for being like a family to me and for all of your love and support. I appreciate it more than you know.
Love to you all,