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Hope wasn’t expecting Lizzie to come. She couldn’t think of a good enough reason for her to show up. Even though the other girl had told her yes, Hope wasn’t holding her breath.

 

She kept checking the time on her phone seeing they only had a few minutes until 7:00. Trick or Treating was starting soon. Her aunts were with Nik in their bathroom, finishing up the fake blood on his face. They had gone with the wax make up stick, which Nik had been referring to as his Blood Crayon the moment they had bought it at the Halloween store last week. It was the least messiest option for the small boy.

 

She sat on the chaise of the couch, tapping her foot on the ground. She was ready to go whenever he was. She kept her outfit simple, wearing a pair of dark pants and her usual boots, a long sleeve shirt tucked in with an overcoat on top.

 

She was, admittedly, nervous to take him out but her Aunts asked her to do them a favor while they sat around the fire pit and passed out candy. It was ready to go on their driveway, flames carefully licking through the lid. Hope was keeping an eye on it as well while they were inside.

 

A moment later, she heard Nik’s happy squeals growing closer, and soon he was racing towards her on the couch.

 

“Oh my god,” she said through her laughter, more to herself than to him. “You look so good buddy!” She held her arms out for him, letting him collide with her.

 

“Agh! I’m a gampire,” he shouted, wiggling around in her hold. He held his mouth open in what he thought was a threatening way. He didn’t have any fake teeth, too little to not accidentally swallow any. Hope just thought he looked like a baby bird.

 

“You’re scarier than any other vampire I’ve met.” Hope held him out slightly to look closer at the fake blood.

 

Freya had smeared it all around his mouth, drawing small revlets of it streaming down to his neck. It looked pretty good. He was wearing a cheap, store bought costume. His sleeves were white, rolled up to keep his hands free. The costume gave an allusion to a vest over the shirt, buttoned up to the chin with extra fabric to act as an ascot, but it was all stitched together in one piece. Hope could see Nik’s undershirt, peeking out at the wrists and collar, an extra layer to keep him warm in the chill. The costume's pants were a cheap attempt at slacks, and her Aunts purchased a pair of shiny dress shoes in Nik’s size to complete the look. He already had a black coat that would go well over top to keep him warm, and it wasn’t too cold to the point that he would have to cover his costume completely.

 

“Give me blood,” Nik said, his little voice sounding goofy as he tried to imitate vampires he had seen on TV.

 

“You don’t want Hopey’s blood, baby.” Keelin’s voice tore Nik from Hope’s arms as he rushed towards his Mama.

 

“Give me blood!” He yelled, colliding with her legs and baring his mouth like he did with Hope.

 

Keelin laughed and scooped him up, planting kisses on his cheeks. “Are you excited to go trick or treating with Hope?”

 

“Yeah! We get candy,” Nik said, wrapping his arms around Keelin and resting his head on her shoulder.

 

“That’s right! And you’re all ready, and it’s time to start going. Go get your pumpkin,” Keelin said, setting him down and patting his butt to send him towards the front door. He raced off, focused on digging his orange pumpkin bucket out of the closet. Keelin turned to Hope. “Thank you for agreeing to take him. Please hold his hand the entire time.”

 

“I’ve got him, I promise,” Hope said, watching Nik attempt to put his coat on by himself. It was upside down.

 

“Alright well. Freya’s going to grab our candy stash and our drinks and we’ll be on the driveway. Call us if anything happens, ok?”

 

Hope nodded and stood, walking over to help Nik with his coat and grabbing his bucket for him. “Ready to go, bud?”

 

“Yeah!” he said excitedly, jumping in his spot before reaching up for Hope’s hand.

 

Hope smiled down at him, looking over her shoulder as she pushed the screen door open. “We’ll see you later,” she said to her Aunts, putting her weight on the door to open it without looking.

 

“Oh, shit!”

 

Hope jumped at the voice, stopping her momentum just in time to not whack Lizzie in the face.

 

“‘Izzie!” Nik said, staring up at her angrily. “No bad words!”

 

“Sorry Niky,” Lizzie said, shooting Hope a bemused look.

 

Hope stepped out of the house, making sure Nik was out of the way before letting the door close behind them. “What are you doing here?” she asked before she could stop the words from tumbling out.

 

“You asked me to come,” Lizzie said, suddenly sounding so unsure of herself.

 

“No. No, yeah! Yeah, I did,” Hope said, words rushing out.

 

“Unless you want me to-” Lizzie said, gesturing to her car parked on the side of the road. Steam was still rolling off the hood. She had just gotten there.

 

Hope flushed in embarrassment. “No! No, no. No you can-”

 

“Are you sure?”

 

“Yes, please! Please stay.” Hope reached out for Lizzie’s sleeve, holding it tightly.

 

“Ok,” Lizzie said, oh so softly.

 

The girls jumped, startled out of their little moment when the screen door opened behind them. “Hi Lizzie.”

 

“Hi Freya,” Lizzie said, smiling at the older woman.

 

“Are you going out with Hope?” Keelin asked, shutting the front door and the screen door behind her.

 

“Uh, yep. I am,” Lizzie responded.

 

“Good! You two have fun, please keep an eye on Nik.” Freya gave Lizzie a fond look as she moved past her off the porch. Keelin pressed a hand to Lizzie’s shoulder as she moved by, squeezing it in greeting.

 

The girls and Nik were left standing there for a bit, Hope just kind of staring at Lizzie. “Uh, you- you look…” she trailed off.

 

Lizzie was wearing a pair of dark jeans, tucked into a pair of boots. She had on a sweater, a light blue color that Hope thought really brought out her eyes. Over top she had on a light cardigan and an overcoat. Her hair was up in a braid, completely tucked up with only a few curls framing her face. Lizzie glanced down at herself before looking up with a confident smirk. “Perfect? Astonishing? Runway ready as usual?”

 

“Beautiful,” Hope finished.

 

Lizzie paused, looking at Hope for a beat. “Oh. Thank you.”

 

Hope felt like she was burning up. “Uh, yeah. Anytime.” Before she could inwardly or outwardly cringe, whichever came first, the girls were interrupted.

 

“‘Opey can we go now?” Nik asked, looking up at them.

 

“Oh, yeah bud. Yeah, let's go get some candy.”

 

Nik cheered and soon they were off. They stopped by Freya and Keelin so Nik could hug them one last time, and soon they were turning right out of their driveway. Hope had planned the best route for them, grateful that their neighborhood was essentially just one big circle.

 

They walked up to their next door neighbors house, Nik oohing at all of the halloween decorations on his way up to the door. Lizzie hung back as Hope walked him.

 

“Ok, buddy. Ring the doorbell and say “trick or treat” when they open the door.”

 

Nik looked like a deer in headlights for a second before turning and reaching for the doorbell. Hope took pity on him when he was struggling to reach and pushed it for him. A few seconds later, their neighbor was opening the door holding a cauldron of candy. “Well hello little Mikaelsons.”

 

Hope responded with “Hi Mr. Wesclin” just as Nik was giving his own response.

 

“I’m a gampire! Agh!” his mouth hung open, almost in a perfect circle.

 

“Oh my! You’re very scary Mr. Nik.” Mr. Wesclin stooped and let Nik pick out his candy, dropping an extra piece in and winking at Hope. “Have fun kids!”

 

“Say “thank you” Niky,” Hope said, reaching for his hand.

 

“Thank you!” Nik said, waving with his new Reece’s Cup in his hand.

 

“Alright, the first house was a success,” Hope said, rejoining with Lizzie on the sidewalk.

 

“What’d you get bud?” she asked, trying to peek into his bucket.

 

“Reecey Cup,” Nik said, still admiring the shiny orange foil in his hand.

 

Hope laughed at the little boy and soon they were moving on to the next house. They had to skip the next few, seeing none of them had porch lights on. Hope guided Nik up to the next house, helping him with the doorbell again. “Alright, Mr. Wesclin knows us better than our other neighbors, so he didn’t mind, but try and say “trick or treat”, ok?” Hope said, squatting behind Nik and holding his waist.

 

Nik nodded as the door opened.

 

“Well hi there.”

 

Nik stared for a moment. Hope could feel him tense up, so she just rubbed his back and waited for him to speak. “Emnems?” he asked, holding his bucket up to the woman.

 

Hope burst into laughter, pulling Nik closer to her. “No buddy, you can’t just ask for M&M’s.”

 

The woman at the door took to rifling through her candy bowl, revealing a pack of M&M’s a second later. “It’s ok, honey. Here you are, Mr. Vampire. Enjoy your Emnems, ok?” she said, smiling brightly at Nik.

 

“Thank you!” Nik beamed before pulling Hope’s hand to head back down the driveway.

 

“Thank you!” Hope repeated waving at the woman as they walked away.

 

Lizzie was there waiting for them again, reaching her hand down for Nik to high five, laughing as he unnecessarily jumped as he clapped his palm to hers. “Good job! Did you get something you like?”

 

“Emnem!” he shouted, flinging his bucket around over his head.

 

Lizzie, having grown accustomed to Nik’s way of speaking, immediately picked up on what that was. “I love M&M’s!”

 

Nik squealed happily, beaming up at the tall blonde before he was grabbing her hand and heading up the sidewalk again. Hope lingered for a few seconds to take a picture of the two of them, saving it to her Favorites folder.

 

They continued on for a while like that. Hope would take Nik up to the houses while Lizzie hung back, the three of them occasionally going together when people had driveway setups like her Aunts did. By the 7th house, Nik was able to say “trick or treat” which came out sounding more like “trickeat”. He was getting extra candy for being so cute.

 

Eventually they hit the end of their street and had to backtrack a little bit to turn onto an adjacent street. Nik was walking on Hope’s side, mumbling what he thought were vampire noises to himself.

 

Hope spared a glance to Lizzie as they walked. “I wasn’t expecting you to come,” she said quietly.

 

Lizzie turned to look at her questioningly. “Why?” she asked simply.

 

Hope shrugged and looked away. “I couldn’t think of a good enough reason for you to come.”

 

Lizzie responded just as they were coming up on the next house. “I came for you.”

 

Hope looked wide eyed at her, unable to respond as Nik tugged her up the driveway to the door. She helped him through the motions again, barely keeping a hold on his hand as he tried to race to the house next door.

 

They slowly made their way through a few more houses. Nik asked to skip one that was set up like a haunted house, not wanting to go inside just for some candy. Hope didn’t blame him, the set up was creeping her out too.

 

They were making their way through a cul de sac when it happened the first time. Hope was so focused on making sure Nik made it up to a house safely, minding the teenagers that were grouped around, stomping through people’s yards as they loudly went around trick or treating that she almost missed the way Lizzie’s hand had brushed hers.

 

It happened again a minute later on the sidewalk between houses, just a light brush on the back of her fingers.

 

When it happened a third time, Hope was starting to think it wasn’t an accident.

 

She counted a fourth, and fifth, and a sixth before sighing and just grabbing Lizzie’s hand. “Just commit to it, Lizzie.”

 

Lizzie let out a sharp laugh. “My bad,” she said.

 

Hope rolled her eyes fondly before loosening her grip to entwine their fingers.

 

“My hand was getting cold,” Lizzie said, leaning down to say it to Hope quietly.

 

“Sure,” Hope said flatly. “Let’s go with that.” She shot Lizzie a knowing look, smiling at the glare she got in response.

 

They were almost through the second street when Hope could see Nik slowing down a little bit, yawning every so often. “I think he’s only got about 20 more minutes in him until he’s done,” she said, leaning into Lizzie as she spoke.

 

“It’s already been an hour, that’s pretty good for a two year old,” Lizzie said, peeking around Hope to look at the boy. He was shuffling his feet a little more and looked tired.

 

They finished the last couple of houses on that street before turning back onto their street, working their way back to Hope’s house slowly.

 

“You up for a little bit more, buddy?” Hope said, pulling on his hand so he would look at her.

 

“Yeah! I’m ok,” he said, trying to wake up a bit.

 

“Alright, are you sure? Because if you’re tired we can call it a night and go back home.”

 

“No! More candy!” Nik said, picking up the pace into a small run and pulling Hope with him. The girls giggled at him and rushed to keep up.

 

Hope took him up to the next house, ringing the doorbell for him and stepping back.

 

“Trickeat!” Nik said, holding his bucket up to the man who opened the door.

 

“Well hello there little vamp! You haven’t been going around drinking anyone’s blood, have you?” the man asked, kneeling down so Nik could see the candy inside the bowl.

 

“Nuh uh. I’ve been good,” Nik said before choosing a box of Nerds.

 

“Well that’s good! Enjoy your candy, little man!”

 

“Thank you!” Nik said, turning and stepping off the porch, Hope following closely behind.

 

The girls let him walk in front of them as they walked along to the next house, Lizzie reaching for Hope’s hand the moment she was close enough. They lingered in the driveway as they arrived, when Nik didn’t immediately move towards the door.

 

“You ready buddy?” Hope asked, releasing her hold on Lizzie’s hand and reaching out for Nik to grab.

 

Nik stared at it for a moment before looking over at Lizzie. He reached his tiny hand out towards her and Hope’s heart melted. Lizzie looked at her wide eyed for a moment before looking back at Nik and taking his hand. “I guess we’ll be right back,” Lizzie said, her gaze lingering on Hope’s for a few seconds even as they started walking away.

 

Hope watched them walk up to the door, Lizzie holding Nik’s hand as they climbed up the single step up to the porch. Hope could see them talking, choosing not to listen in and just watch. Lizzie pointed at the doorbell and Nik got excited before the blonde was stooping to pick him up, letting him press the button on his own. She set him back down and crouched next to him while the door opened. Hope could hear Nik’s excited greeting from where she was standing, and how excited he got when the woman at the door let him pick out extra candy. He thanked her and soon he was turning to walk away. Lizzie stood and grabbed his hand again, lifting him up higher into the air when he jumped off the porch step. He giggled all the way back to where Hope was standing waiting for them.

 

“Did you get a lot of candy?” she asked, noting that Nik was still holding tightly to Lizzie.

 

“Yeah! Reecey’s and Smarties and Kisses!” he said, lifting his bucket up. It was halfway full by now.

 

“Nik, do you want me to carry your bucket for you?” Hope asked, noting how he had been adjusting his grip on it for the last few houses. It had to be too heavy for him by now. She took it from him when he held it to her, stooping to catch it before it hit the ground. “Alright, you up for a few more houses?” she asked, taking his other hand and walking along, Nik inbetween her and Lizzie.

 

“Yeah.” He sounded sleepy.

 

“Ok, how about three more and then we’ll go home?” Hope looked down at him, seeing his little nod.

 

“He’s so tired,” Lizzie whispered.

 

“Yeah. Thanks for taking him up to that last house,” Hope whispered back.

 

“Of course. I was surprised when he asked me to.”

 

“He likes you. A lot,” Hope said, her words dripping with affection.

 

“He’s pretty cool,” Lizzie said, shooting a playful grin at Hope.

 

They stopped at the next driveway. Nik reached for his bucket from Hope, keeping his hand gripped in Lizzie’s.

 

“I guess you’re up again,” Hope said.

 

“We’ll be back in a second. Don’t miss me too much!” Lizzie called over her shoulder as Nik dragged her up the driveway.

 

“Too late,” Hope said under her breath.

 

Nik wanted Lizzie to take him to all three of the houses. In just those few minutes, he could barely keep his eyes open, and his nose was red. He was tired and cold and the girls could tell.

 

“Alright, buddy. This is a good candy stash you have here. Think you want to call it a night?” Hope asked gently. He had an almost full bucket as the last houses had been generous to him.

 

Nik nodded and rubbed his eyes, before turning to Lizzie and angling his head up, his arms above his head.

 

Lizzie looked lost as she turned to Hope.

 

“He wants you to pick him up,” she said quietly to her, laughing at her confusion.

 

“Oh!” Lizzie exclaimed before stooping to scoop Nik up into her arms. “You want me to carry you home, bub?”

 

Hope pulled her phone out, not trying to hide the pictures she was taking. Lizzie had her arm under Nik’s bottom, her free hand splayed across his back. He hadn’t completely slumped against her just yet, one hand coming up to warp around her neck, the other rubbing his eye. He nodded at her humming a yes.

 

Lizzie turned to meet Hope’s eyes, instead finding a phone held up as Hope smiled at whatever was on the screen. “Hey! No flash photography of the art work.”

 

“This might be the cutest thing I’ve ever seen,” Hope said, pocketing her phone and adjusting her grip on Nik’s bucket.

 

“I am not cute, Mikaelson,” Lizzie playfully grumbled. Nik took that moment to lay his head on Lizzie’s shoulder, the hand that was rubbing his eye coming up to grab her coat collar. She held onto him tighter, making sure he was comfortable.

 

“Yeah, you are,” Hope said before turning and heading down the sidewalk. She stood on Lizzie’s left, occasionally glancing over at the back of Nik’s head as they walked. “Thank you for coming,” she said after a quiet minute.

 

“Of course. I had a lot of fun.”

 

“Trick or treating with a two year old?” Hope asked.

 

“Oh yeah. Couldn’t imagine a better way to spend my  night.”

 

Hope laughed at their ridiculousness. “I had a lot of fun too.”

 

Lizzie dropped the hand that was holding Nik’s back, reaching for Hope’s. They walked the rest of the short way in silence. Pretty soon, they were turning into the driveway, appearing behind a horde of kids all dressed up as Scooby-Doo characters, complete with their great dane.

 

Freya noticed them first. “Oh my goodness,” she said, dissolving into quiet chuckles. “You guys are so cute.”

 

Hope rolled her eyes at her Aunt's fawning over them.

 

“Will you take him upstairs and clean him up please? We’ve still got a few hours out here,” Freya asked, standing to check on Nik. He was fast asleep in Lizzie’s hold.

 

“Did he have a good time?” Keelin asked from where she was still sitting.

 

“Yeah he did great. Everyone thought he was adorable so they gave him extra candy,” Hope said. She was still holding onto Lizzie’s hand.

 

“Oh great. He’ll be eating nothing but sugar for the next two weeks,” Freya said, rubbing Nik’s back a few more times before moving aside. “Please wipe the blood off his face,” she called after the girls as they made their way inside.

 

Hope held the door for Lizzie, closing it shut behind her. “You don’t have to stay for this part, you can go home if you want to,” she said, peeling her coat off and hanging it up. She unlaced her boots quickly, trying to stay quiet.

 

“It’s ok, I can help you with him,” Lizzie said, adjusting her hold on Nik.

 

Hope yanked her boots off her feet, tossing them into the closest and shutting it before reaching to take Nik from Lizzie. He didn’t move one bit as she laid him against her shoulder. She waited for Lizzie to toe her boots off and set her coat and cardigan aside before gingerly stepping over the baby gate and walking upstairs. She stepped into Nik’s room, not bothering with the light and instead flipping on his moon shaped night light. “Will you go get a washcloth? Just get one corner of it damp so I can wipe his face off?” Hope asked, laying Nik on his bed.

 

Lizzie left to fulfill Hope’s request and she quickly got him undressed, laying his costume on the glider in his room and pulling out a set of pajamas, the black ones with skeletons on it that he requested to wear for bed that night. Lizzie returned just as Hope was pulling the covers over him.

 

“He’s a deep sleeper,” Lizzie whispered from her position in the doorway. She watched as Hope gingerly wiped his face, most of the makeup coming right off.

 

“Yeah, he always has been,” Hope responded. Some of the make up was still staining his face, but she wasn’t going to bother with that while he was asleep. She smoothed his hair back and stood, stepping out of his room and shutting the door.

 

Lizzie had moved out of the way for her to exit, and she stopped in the bathroom really quick to rinse the washcloth and hang it to dry overnight. Lizzie wasn’t in the hallway when she exited the bathroom, but a light in her bedroom was on.

 

She slowly walked over, looking in the doorway to find Lizzie sitting on the side of her bed, facing the window, the lamp in the corner having been turned on and washing the room in a dull glow.

 

“I wasn’t supposed to leave after that, was I?” Lizzie asked, her hands bracing herself on the bed as she turned her head towards the door.

 

“Not unless you wanted to,” Hope replied, leaning her weight against the doorframe, playing with her fingers.

 

The girls just looked at each other for a second, soft smiles in place. Lizzie’s gaze dropped slightly, noticing Hope’s hands. “Are you a little restless?” she asked gently.

 

Hope looked down, not even realizing what her hands had been doing. She pulled them apart and pushed off the door, stepping into the room more. “Not really, no.”

 

Lizzie sat a little straighter, her usual confident expression on her face. “Hope Mikaelson, are you fiddling because I make you nervous?”

 

Hope giggled at her, taking a few more steps, sticking near the dresser. Lizzie sitting on her bed was making her nervous. “No. I actually got pretty used to you being around. Sticking your nose in my private life.”

 

“You wound me,” Lizzie said dryly.

 

Hope smiled a little wider, and took a few more steps. She was hovering in the middle of her own room, almost directly between the bed and the window. Lizzie looked so pretty in the low light of the room, she was almost glowing. Hope couldn’t stand how thin the wall around her heart was at this point. One more soft look from Lizzie and she was afraid it would all come tumbling down.

 

“Hey,” Lizzie said, so quietly. She reached a hand out towards Hope. “Come here.”

 

Hope stared at the outstretched hand for a moment before taking an unsure step. Then another. And another. She was just close enough to grab Lizzie’s hand gingerly. She blonde didn’t pull her forward, just letting Hope hold her hand with what felt like miles of distance between them.

 

“Lizzie, what are we doing?” Hope asked quietly, staring at their grasped hands.

 

Lizzie looked up for a few seconds, faking thought. “In regards to what, exactly?”

 

Hope took a deep breath, taking another step closer and dropping Lizzie’s hand. “This,” she said.

 

Lizzie looked up at her, her hand coming to rest on her own thigh, her other still holding her weight up on the bed. “Well,” she started, pulling her hand forward as she sat up, leaning towards Hope as her hands reached out for her.

 

Hope could feel Lizzie’s knuckles brushing right above the waist of her jeans. Lizzie hooked her fingers in her belt loops and tugged her forward, steadying Hope with a hand flat against her stomach as she stumbled, her other hand sliding around to rest on her lower back. She was standing between Lizzie’s legs, the outside of her thighs pressed right against the inside of Lizzie’s.

 

Hope’s hands came up to rest on Lizzie’s shoulders, looking down at the blonde. It was odd seeing her from this angle, always used to being the smaller one. She couldn’t help but to trail one hand around Lizzie’s neck and run her fingers through her baby hairs.

 

“We haven’t really started to do anything ,” Lizzie continued, her hands gripping Hope tightly.

 

Hope nodded and hummed, going along with Lizzie’s playfulness. “Right, of course.”

 

“Unless, that was your big plan tonight,” Lizzie said. “Sweep me off my feet somehow, get all romantic.”

 

“Mm, yeah. There was definitely romance involved in between taking Nik trick or treating,” Hope said.

 

“Oh, no. That was obviously the back up because you got scared at the last second.”

 

“Oh, was it,” Hope said, smiling wide. She moved her free hand to tuck Lizzie’s stray hairs behind her ear.

 

“Mhm. You know just how deserving I am of romance and big gestures. You wanted to do something amazing but fear of rejection made you back out.” Lizzie looked up at Hope so softly she felt like she was choking on all the affection.

 

“You wouldn’t reject me, you like me too much,” Hope said, her voice dropping low. Her hand had returned to Lizzie’s shoulder.

 

“You can’t prove that,” Lizzie said, her voice barely above a whisper.

 

“I think I can, actually,” Hope said, her lips curling up in a smile before she was leaning down. Right before she was about to close the rest of the distance she stopped and pulled back slightly. “Is this ok?” she whispered, worried that it wouldn’t be.

 

“Shut up and kiss me, Hope,” Lizzie ground out. Her grip on Hope’s waist was like a vice.

 

“Hey, consent can be very attrac- MMPH!”

 

Hope’s words were cut off and Lizzie surged up, connecting their lips. They had to pull apart as Hope’s smile grew, both at Lizzie’s actions and from disbelief.

 

Their second kiss was far better from the first. Hope moved the hand that was on Lizzie’s shoulder to cup her face gently. Lizzie pulled Hope in closer, changing the angle drastically as Hope had to stoop and Lizzie had to crane her neck up. They made it work for the time being as they separated for air, only to reconnect a few seconds later.

 

Hope couldn’t get enough of Lizzie. She almost loathed to admit to herself that she was a good kisser, not wanting to admit it out loud and give Lizzie that satisfaction. Sure, she thought Lizzie was pretty, but they still had a delicate frenemy relationship to uphold here.

 

Those thoughts went out the window when Hope felt Lizzie grab the back of her thigh. She pulled away with a squeak, glancing down confused.

 

“Come here,” Lizzie said, her voice deeper than Hope thinks she’s ever heard. She was pulling on Hope’s left leg, her other hand still firm on Hope’s hip, tugging down slightly.

 

Hope conceded easily, bending her knee to bring her leg up to rest beside Lizzie’s, putting her weight on it to bring her other leg up on the other side, effectively straddling the blonde. Lizzie wasted no time in pulling Hope’s hips down, her hands sliding around to her back as she leaned back up and reconnected their lips.

 

Hope let out an embarrassing whine, her hands coming back up to cup Lizzie’s face, one of her thumbs lightly rubbing the blonde’s cheek. Lizzie giggled into the kiss and Hope knew that meant she had heard the noise. “Shut up,” she mumbled against Lizzie’s mouth, both of them sporting twin grins.

 

Hope sank more into Lizzie’s embrace, resting more of her weight on her. She couldn’t help the second whine from escaping as Lizzie ran her hands down her back to her waist. Lizzie broke their kiss to laugh. “Someone’s pretty vocal tonight,” she teased.

 

“Shut up,” Hope hissed again, the hand on the back of Lizzie’s neck trying to tug her closer.

 

“Make me,” Lizzie shot back.

 

Hope surged forward again, connecting their lips in a deeper kiss than any of the previous ones. She sighed into the embrace, feeling so at ease wrapped up in Lizzie like this. She wasn’t sure how much time passed like that, both of them running their hands over the other, lost in the feeling of the other’s lips on their own.

 

Hope gasped at the feeling of Lizzie’s hands sliding up her waist, before they were pulling up the sides of her shirt, trying to get them loose from her jeans. She stilled for a moment as the other girl tugged at her, pulling away and glancing down at Lizzie’s hands.

 

“Relax,” Lizzie said, her lips brushing Hope’s ear. “I’m not trying to strip you down just yet.” She placed a hot kiss just below Hope’s jaw.

 

Yet ,” Hope repeated, her hands coming to Lizzie’s shoulders to grasp them as the blonde’s lips trailed down her neck.

 

“We can get to that at a later time, if you want,” Lizzie said, her lips trailing upward now. She let out a triumphant Aha as Hope’s shirt finally came loose and wasted no time in letting her hands wander the smooth skin she now had access to.

 

Hope sucked in a sharp gasp at the feeling of Lizzie’s hands on her skin. “Your hands are freezing,” she said, the chill obvious in her words.

 

“Well, I’m trying to warm them up,” Lizzie said like it was the most obvious thing in the world.

 

“You’re an ass,” Hope said, her smile betraying her words.

 

“You like it,” Lizzie shot back, moving one hand to flatten on Hope’s back, the other gripping the girls’ tiny waist.

 

Hope couldn’t help but arch into Lizzie more, trying to get away from the offending, frozen hands that were feeling her up. Their fronts were flush against each other now. “Up for debate at the moment.” 

 

Lizzie laughed, coming out more as a hum as she pressed a trail of kisses all the way up to Hope’s mouth, reconnecting their lips. After a few minutes, Hope could feel herself relaxing, Lizzie’s hands nowhere near as cold as they were before. That didn’t mean she wanted to move away from the other girl, keeping herself pressed as close as possible still.

 

They could barely go a few minutes without having to break apart, smiling widely at the other before continuing their little make out session. Hope lost count of the amount of sighs she drew from Lizzie as her fingers scratched at the base of her neck, tangling in with her baby hairs. She figured it was on par with the sounds Lizzie had drawn from her from rubbing her hands lightly over her back and her waist.

 

Eventually Hope managed to pull herself away, sucking in a deep breath to try and satiate her burning lungs. Lizzie apparently didn’t need the same, for as soon as Hope pulled away, Lizzie was attaching her lips to her neck. Hope’s fingers scratched a little harsher against the base of Lizzie’s neck, relishing in the feeling. She hissed as bit down lightly on her pulse, before pushing her away by her shoulder. “Scoot back,” she whispered, before reconnecting their lips for a quick kiss.

 

“What?” Lizzie asked, dazed and a little confused.

 

“Just scoot back a bit,” Hope said, sitting up a little straighter, removing some of her weight from the girl under her.

 

Lizzie furrowed her brow but complied, placing her hands beside her to lift herself back a little bit. Her legs straightened out as she moved, no longer dangling off the bed. “Is this good?” she asked as she settled back, her hands already reaching for Hope.

 

Hope smiled at her, raising up to kneel above Lizzie’s legs. “Yeah, it’s good.” In the next instant, one of Hope’s hands was swatting at one of Lizzie’s before it could grab her, the other coming up to rest flat against Lizzie’s chest for the briefest of seconds before she was shoving her back.

 

Lizzie landed with a huff, her eyes wide in surprise before they were meeting Hope’s gaze again, pupils blown. “Ok,” she said, more to herself than to Hope.

 

Hope tried to contain her smile, biting her lower lip in hopes that it would go away. She slowly lifted one knee, shifting up the bed before moving her other leg to do the same. With a soft flick of her hand, Hope’s door shut quietly just as she rested her weight back on Lizzie’s hips. Her hands rested on Lizzie’s stomach for a moment, really giving them both time to catch their breath. Her nails softly scratched over Lizzie’s sweater feeling her toned stomach underneath it. Lizzie’s hands reached for Hope’s thighs, curling around the back and tugging slightly. Hope ignored her hint and sat up a little straighter, her hands reaching for the hem of her shirt and slowly pulling it up and over her head.

 

Lizzie inhaled sharply, propping up on her elbows to watch closely. Her eyes followed the garment as it was tossed off the side of the bed, before her gaze was snapping back to the girl in her lap.

 

Hope watched Lizzie’s eyes rake all over her, taking in every new inch of skin presented to her. “Fuck,” Lizzie said under her breath, her eyes locking back on Hope’s.

 

That was all Hope needed before she was leaning over, pushing Lizzie to lay back flat and reconnecting their lips. She moaned at the feeling of Lizzie’s hands coming to rest at her waist again, then moving to run along every inch of skin she could feel. She could feel Lizzie laughing softly against her, laughter that quickly turned into a groan as Hope rolled her hips down. Lizzie’s hands gripped her tighter, and Hope wondered for half a second if she was going to have to worry about bruises showing up.

 

Hope pulled away for half a breath, turning her head to change the angle before kissing Lizzie sweetly. She pressed a few quick kisses to her lips before deepening it, delighting in the noise she drew from Lizzie as she did. She felt like she was drowning in her, every part of Lizzie consuming her and she put up no fight to resist. She was content to stay there forever, hovering over the other girl, her body feeling electric as Lizzie ran her hands all over her.

 

She broke their kiss with a gasp as Lizzie’s hands skirted over her ribs, her thumb brushing along the edge of her bra before resting below it. “Is this ok?” Lizzie whispered, her eyes gentle as Hope pulled away enough to look at her. Lizzie’s thumb was stroking the soft skin just below the fabric. Hope couldn’t nod fast enough. “Yeah?” Lizzie confirmed.

 

“Yeah,” Hope reassured, kissing Lizzie again half a second later. She dropped almost her full weight onto Lizzie, rolling her hips again to draw another sweet noise out of her. When Lizzie separated their lips a moment later, she barely caught the whine in the back of her throat from escaping, chasing after her.

 

“Hey,” Lizzie said softly a second later, separating from Hope again, her voice dripping with affection.

 

Hope only listened because of the hand curled around her cheek, holding her in place. “What?” she asked impatiently. She didn’t like being denied what she wanted and all she wanted was to keep kissing Lizzie.

 

Lizzie looked up at Hope. “You’re pretty.”

 

Hope flushed completely at the compliment. “Oh. Shut up,” she said quickly, trying to lean back in.

 

Lizzie stopped her before she got very far. “Hang on a second, baby.” Hope froze at the nickname, her entire body heating up from that single word. She barely registered what Lizzie was trying to do, only realizing as Lizzie’s hands brushed against her skin. She sat up and watched as Lizzie worked her own sweater up and over her head, the fact that she was laying flat on her back not hindering her in the slightest. She flung it towards the pillows on Hope’s bed before placing her hands on Hope’s thighs, letting Hope decide what happened next.

 

Hope took her time tracing her eyes over the girl underneath her, her hands following suit a moment later. Her hands landed on Lizzie’s stomach, pressing her hands against the firm muscles she found there. Her right hand curled slightly as she scratched the skin slightly, feeling Lizzie tense as she hissed lightly. She had to tear her eyes away from the light red marks she had left on her skin, locking eyes with Lizzie again. 

 

Neither of them moved for a few seconds, both a little unsure. Hope shifted a little, spreading her knees a little further, her weight pressing a little firmer against Lizzie’s hips. That’s all Lizzie needed to sit up, propping up on her elbows before rising fully, her hand shooting out to grab onto Hope as she started to tip backwards. “I got you,” she mumbled against Hope’s skin, her lips pressed against her jaw.

 

Hope’s smile almost split her face. She wanted to come up with something witty to say to Lizzie, something to hide how much she was enjoying every way they were pressed together, but decided to just kiss her when she couldn’t. Her hands cupped Lizzie’s jaw, her thumbs resting on her cheeks, the rest of her fingers curling around her neck. Lizzie broke the kiss, turning her head the other way and reconnecting their lips. Hope fell into it, kissing her deeper as she sighed, her hips rolling down as she did.

 

Lizzie sucked in a breath as she pulled away. “You’ve got to stop doing that,” she said, her lips brushing Hope’s. She sounded tense.

 

“Doing what?” Hope asked cheekily, rolling her hips again as she did.

 

Hope ,” Lizzie said pointedly, her hands grabbing Hope’s tightly to prevent them from moving again.

 

“What are you going to do about it?” Hope trailed one of her hands down, pressing it flat right about Lizzie’s heart.

 

The noise Hope’s question pulled from Lizzie sounded almost animalistic. Hope had no time to prepare before she suddenly found herself on her back with Lizzie shuffling above her. She tried to pull Lizzie down closer to her, only for her hands to be caught before they could make contact. They were pinned above her head a second later, Lizzie moving her grip from Hope’s wrists to intertwine their fingers as she recaptured Hope’s lips.

 

Hope couldn’t find it in her to be embarrassed at the whine that escaped her, nor at the one that immediately followed as Lizzie’s hips rolled into hers.

 

“That’s what I’m going to do about it,” Lizzie said, pulling away just enough to look down at Hope. Her eyes were half lidded with arousal and Lizzie was sure she looked the same. She pulled back a little further, her lips curling up in a small smile as she really took in the girl underneath her. “Y’know,” she started, slowly letting go of Hope’s hands and trailing her fingers down her arms. She took her time, running her fingers softly over Hope’s shoulders, tracing her collar bones, dancing slowly over her sternum and down her stomach, coming to a stop at her ribs. She watched as goosebumps formed on Hope’s flesh as she worked.

 

“What?” Hope choked out, almost overwhelmed by all the sensations.

 

Lizzie’s smile grew hearing how desperate Hope sounded. She leaned back down, her hands braced on the bed next to Hope’s sides. She took note of the fact that Hope’s hands hadn’t moved. Her fingers were curled into the comforter, keeping them just where Lizzie had left them. “I think you look prettier like this,” she said, her lips brushing Hope’s ear as she spoke, her teeth closing around her earlobe a second later. Hope’s hips jumped up at the sensation, grinding against Lizzie’s. They were pushed back down and pinned to the bed. “I said stop that .”

 

“Why?” Hope asked, doing it again for good measure.

 

Lizzie lifted her head and pressed down harder on Hope’s hips, digging her nails in slightly. “Because it feels really good. And if you keep doing that then one of your aunts is probably going to walk in on us while I’m doing very inappropriate things to their niece.”

 

Hope felt like the wind was knocked out of her from Lizzie’s words. She swallowed thickly, watching Lizzie’s eyes track the motion. “Like what?” she asked, her voice rough.

 

“Like what would I do to you?” Hope nodded. Lizzie’s mouth slowly turned up into a teasing smile. “Wouldn’t you like to know,” she said before forward and kissing Hope soundly. Her hands slowly slip up Hope’s torso, coming to rest at her ribs. Her thumbs played with the hem of Hope’s bra, driving Hope crazy.

 

Hope’s arms finally came down, her hands grasping Lizzie’s shoulders. Her nails gently dug into Lizzie’s skin just as Lizzie nipped at her lower lip. “I would, that’s why I asked,” she said, her lips moving to kiss Lizzie’s jaw.

 

“True. But I’d rather show you,” Lizzie said, shifting to slot a knee between Hope’s legs. She watched as every bit of tension left Hope’s body, her head thrown back as she groaned loudly at the sensation.

 

Fuck .”

 

Lizzie was quick to shush her. “Alert the whole neighborhood, why don’t you.” Hope paid her no mind that she even registered her words, her hips grinding slowly against Lizzie’s thigh. Lizzie watched her for a few moments, mesmerized. “Hope,” she tried, her eyes drifting back down to watch Hope’s hips. “Hey,” she said softly, finally pulling her leg away.

 

“No, no ,” Hope pleaded, wondering why Lizzie had pulled away. Her hands reached blindly, tugging at Lizzie’s hips for a few seconds before realization set it. “Oh my god,” she said, mortified with herself as she realized what she had just been doing. She covered her hands with her face, trying to hide herself and her rising blush.

 

“Hey, no. None of that,” Lizzie said, shifting to move off of Hope, giving her more room. She tried to pull at Hope’s wrist, wanting her to stop hiding, but Hope was holding firm.

 

“I’m so sorry,” Hope mumbled into her hands.

 

“For what?” Lizzie asked, confused as to where Hope’s sudden mood shift was coming from.

 

Hope dropped her hands, her face still screwed in embarrassment. “For that ,” Hope said, gesturing with her hands, not quite sure how to phrase. She sat up quickly, turning away from Lizzie and tried to get off the bed.

 

“Hey,” Lizzie said, grabbing Hope’s arm and pulling her towards her. All it took was one strong tug and Hope was stumbling over her lap. Lizzie quickly helped right Hope, her arms locking around her. “Where do you think you’re going?” she asked.

 

Hope’s forehead dropped to Lizzie’s shoulder. “Just let me go,” she said pitifully.

 

“But I’m not done with you,” Lizzie said, her voice dropping low. She pressed a soft kiss to the side of Hope’s head before leaning down and kissing her shoulder. She slowly trailed her lips inward, smiling against Hope’s skin as she left her head to give Lizzie more room to work. “What got you so upset?” she whispered, pressing multiple kisses just below Hope’s ear.

 

Hope was slowly untensing in Lizzie’s grasp, each kiss relaxing her more and more. “That I was just…” she trailed off.

 

“That you were just grinding against my thigh?” Lizzie filled in.

 

Jesus Christ ,” Hope hissed, her eyes darting to the ceiling in mortification.

 

Lizzie trailed open mouthed kisses down the front of Hope’s throat. “Well you were,” she mumbled before biting at the hollow of Hope’s throat.

 

Hope’s hips jerked involuntarily. “You didn’t have to just say it like that.”

 

Lizzie moved up the other side of Hope’s neck, alternating between kissing and biting. “Hm?” she hummed.

 

Hope shook her head slightly. “I shouldn’t have…”

 

“I don’t know why you’re so worked up about it. It was the sexiest thing I’ve ever seen.”

 

Hope bit her lip, screwing her eyes shut as she struggled to keep another whine from escaping. “I’m not worked up about it, I’m just-”

 

Lizzie cut her off. “No, baby, I’d say you’re incredibly worked up.”

 

Hope froze as she realized what Lizzie was implying.

 

Lizzie pulled her head away, leaving a lingering kiss against Hope’s pulse. “Are you?” she asked quietly, her pupils so blown Hope could barely see any blue left.

 

Hope nodded slowly, her face flushing lightly at the admission.

 

“As much as I would love to take care of that for you, I don’t know how well your neighbors would appreciate that.”

 

Hope furrowed her brow at Lizzie’s words. “What?” she asked, beyond confused.

 

Lizzie rolled her eyes. “Please, you’re so loud .”

 

“I am not!”

 

“Yes you are!”

 

“Ok, no . You’re the loud one between the two of us,” she said, jabbing a finger into Lizzie’s chest for emphasis.

 

“Not tonight, I haven’t been.”

 

“The door is spelled. I made sure to soundproof it,” Hope said, laughing slightly. Lizzie was being ridiculous.

 

“But you forgot to lock it.”

 

Hope sprang backwards off the bed, moving so quickly she had to take a few more steps to prevent herself from falling backwards. Her arms came up to cover herself, her eyes darting to her shirt on the floor. Lizzie had jumped back as well, falling onto the bed before trying to reach for her own sweater.

 

Hope rambled off a quick spell, her shirt appearing on her body instantly.

 

“How the hell did you do that?” Lizzie asked, amazed, finding her own shirt securely on her own body.

 

A throat cleared, shocking her back into reality

 

Lizzie rolled to face the door before propping herself up on her hand, her other hand coming to rest on her hip, facing whoever interrupted them in what she thought was as natural as possible.

 

Freya stood in the doorway, looking extremely entertained. “I was just coming up to ask if Lizzie was spending the night or not. I didn’t realize you were busy ,” she said, pausing to glance between them before emphasizing her final word.

 

“Uh, what?” Hope lamely asked. Her face was burning in mortification.

 

“Is Lizzie staying over?” Freya asked, moving her gaze to Lizzie, smiling a little wider at the girl’s comical pose.

 

Hope looked at Lizzie for a few long seconds, her face glaring red in the low lights. She was still recovering from Freya catching them like that. “Is- is that still even an option?”

 

“What do you mean?” Freya asked, crossing her arms and leaning against the doorway.

 

Hope stared at her confused. “What do you mean?”

 

“Why wouldn’t it be an option?”

 

Hope felt incredibly lost. “We were just-” she gestured to Lizzie, still looking like a fool on her bed. “We were- would she still be allowed?”

 

It was Freya’s turn to stare. “Why wouldn’t she be?” she asked after a few seconds.

 

Hope didn’t have a good response to that. “Uh. I don’t know if she is.” She met Lizzie’s eye.

 

“Yeah, uh. TBD,” Lizzie said, turning to beam up at Freya.

 

The older woman nodded. “Ok, just let me know. Keelin and I were just discussing breakfast plans. If Lizzie stays we might need to thaw out some more bacon.” With that, she turned and left their sight, walking down the stairs.

 

Lizzie dropped her head to the bed. “Your Aunt is so cool.” she said to Hope.

 

“Thanks sweetie!” they heard from halfway down the stairs.

 

Hope collapsed against her desk, resting against the edge of it while she buried her face in her hands. “I can’t believe that just happened,” she said, her words muffled by her hands.

 

“That could have gone much worse. My mom once walked in on Josie with her hand down Penelope’s pants and it prompted a very awkward conversation with all four of us about practicing safe sex.”

 

Hope hummed into her hands, thinking about how horrible that sounded. She eventually sobered up, pushing her hair back with her hands before crossing them in front of her. She turned to find Lizzie had stood from the bed and was just looking at her. “What?” she asked, her voice and her gaze indifferent, but they both knew otherwise.

 

Lizzie looked Hope up and down, her smile widening as she did. “Nothing.”

 

Hope looked at her curiously. “ What ?” she pressed, her own smile growing just from the sight of Lizzie’s.

 

Lizzie shook her head. “You’re just so tiny.”

 

Hope’s face fell immediately. “No height jokes. If this is going to be a thing, you’re not allowed to talk about how small I am.”

 

“Oh, we have a thing now?” Lizzie teased, taking a step closer.

 

“We’re about to not. I can already tell you’re planning more jokes,” Hope said pointedly.

 

“Not jokes. Just some general appreciation.”

 

Hope watched Lizzie take another slow step towards her. They were within touching distance, but neither of them reached out to the other. “Uh huh. Liar,” Hope said, watching Lizzie’s every move.

 

“I’m serious. You’re just so-” Lizzie came to a stop in front of Hope, straightening up and staring down at her. “-small.”

 

“I’m slouching,” Hope said, meeting Lizzie’s gaze and doing nothing to fix her posture.

 

“Barely,” Lizzie whispered, her hands moving to rest on the desk on either side of Hope. She had to stoop to make it work, her face inches from Hope’s. “I’m bending down and I’m still taller than you. You’re tiny.”

 

There wasn’t a single part of Hope’s body that was annoyed with Lizzie’s teasing. “I guess I just got the short end of the stick.”

 

Lizzie’s face brightened. “Hope Mikaelson cracking a joke? Is the world ending?”

 

Hope laughed brightly, unable to hold it in any longer. “You’re so stupid,” she said, her words oozing affection. She reached up with one hand, pulling Lizzie in for a chaste kiss. They pulled away after a few seconds, lingering close to the other. “Are you staying?” Hope whispered between them.

 

Lizzie pulled away slightly, straightening up and wrapping her hands around Hope’s waist. “All of my stuff is at home, I’d have to go get it.” Hope nodded, agreeing that it wouldn’t be worth her driving home just to come right back. “Plus, I don’t think I could survive breakfast tomorrow with your Aunts.”

 

Hope winced, knowing that would be her fate in the morning. “Yeah, that’s fair.”

 

“I should probably get home. Josie has a movie planned for us to watch.”

 

“Oh, that sounds fun,” Hope said, her hands playing with the end of Lizzie’s sweater. Every so often, her knuckle would brush against the girl’s smooth abdomen.

 

“Yeah, it should be good.” Lizzie’s eyes showed she was reluctant to go.

 

Hope nodded, tugging on Lizzie’s sweater to get her to lean in again. They kissed sweetly for several, long seconds, before pulling away.

 

“I should probably go, then,” Lizzie whispered.

 

“Probably,” Hope whispered back.

 

Lizzie leaned in again quickly, catching Hope off guard. They kissed chastely over and over, only stopping when Hope put a hand on Lizzie’s chest and pushed gently.

 

“This isn’t leaving,” Hope said bluntly.

 

“I know. I couldn’t help myself,” Lizzie said.

 

Hope wanted to get lost in the sincere look Lizzie was giving her. “We’ll be here all night if you don’t go,” she said, hating to be the one to break it up.

 

“That doesn’t sound so bad to me,” Lizzie said.

 

“We also have school tomorrow, and are going to need sleep at some point.”

 

That’s the excuse you want to try and use on me?” Lizzie teased.

 

Hope shrugged. “Did it work?” she asked cheekily.

 

“No. But I do need to get home.”

 

Hope nodded and Lizzie finally separated from her. Lizzie took a few steps towards Hope’s door, turning and extending her hand for the other girl to grab onto. Hope wasted no time in reaching for her, letting Lizzie lead her out of her room and down the stairs. They separated their hold on each other as they stepped over the gate, and Hope watched as Lizzie slipped her boots back on, her cardigan and coat following soon after.

 

“Thanks for tonight. I really did have a good time with you and Nik,” Lizzie said oh so softly.

 

“Of course. Thanks for coming. I know Nik had a really good time.”

 

Just Nik?” Lizzie questioned, her smile returning seeing Hope unable to hide hers.

 

“Don’t push your luck,” Hope playfully threatened. Lizzie conceded, playful holding her hands up and reaching for the door. “Let me know when you get home,” Hope said.

 

“I will,” Lizzie said, bending down to press one more kiss to Hope’s lips before stepping out into the cold, fall night.

 

Hope shut and locked the door after her, leaning her head on the cool wood, her smile almost splitting her face. She finally composed herself, picking her head up and shaking it a few times before turning to walk into the kitchen.

 

“Did Lizzie leave?” Keelin asked from where she was standing at the sink, rinsing a few cups.

 

“Yeah, she and Josie had plans for tonight.”

 

“Judging by the way you two were going at it, she wouldn’t have made it to those plans if I didn’t interrupt,” Freya said from the table.

 

“Oh my god!” Hope immediately turned and left the kitchen.

 

“I’m just saying!” Freya called after her.

 

“I hate you!” Hope shot back, hopping the gate and practically running up the stairs.

 

She entered her room, shutting the door to block out her Aunt’s laughter from below. She turned and faced her room, eyes immediately drawn to her wrinkled comforter. She bit the inside of her lip, lost in thought as she remembered what had just happened on that bed- what almost happened on that bed.

 

Hope moved towards her dresser, pulling out clothes to sleep in when she heard her phone buzz. She moved over to pick it up, seeing a text from Lizzie.

 

I hope you know I’m going to have to take a VERY cold shower when I get home

 

Hope flushed hard and locked her phone. She threw it back on her desk, realizing she was going to have to do the exact same thing.