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The Pursuit of Something Greater

Chapter Text

Based on appearances, Kasey had a lot going for her. To an outsider, it would probably even be described as perfect. However, Kasey had a different opinion. 

To most everyone that knew them, Julia and Ezra Davenport were the greatest people in the world. They were kind to everyone. If there was something anyone needed, they were there with whatever was needed and then some. It didn't really hurt for them to do these things considering they had more money than brains. At least that's how Kasey felt.

Her family seemed to be wonderful on the outside but looks are often quite deceiving. All of their charitable acts were done for some kind of tax write off, to be seen, or to make some kind of business connections. They used people to whatever end as long as long as it benefited them in the end. It didn’t help matters that they were constantly berating her and judging every action she took. Nor did it do much for her self esteem to have them continually making it abundantly clear that her sister was better than her in every way, shape, and form imaginable.

Her boyfriend, Bobby Thompson, was what most would call perfect. He was strong, broad shouldered, and he had graduated at the top of his class from one of the most renowned schools in the area. To beat it all, his family owned one of the most successful companies in the nation, meaning he was also a handsome zillionaire. 

However, it was hard to say which he loved more, money or pussy. He was great in bed. At least that's what all the women he was fucking behind Kasey's back had told her but when confronted he would tell her how much he loved her and that he only had eyes for her. He would even pull out the whole he wanted to be a gentleman and "wait until marriage" thing.

He would then run and tell his parents who would tell Kasey's and it was somehow turned into her fault. She was then forced to apologize and to beg him to take her back. Even when she caught him in the act, it was somehow Kasey's fault. 

Yet another player in Kasey's "perfect" world was her perfect 15 year old sister, Mackenzie Davenport, who got absolutely everything she ever wanted. Mackenzie was beautiful. She participated in every sport and did so perfectly while maintaining perfect grades. Amazingly, she still managed to be drunk or high most of the time and to bang half of the guys in her school as well as some of their father's business connections. Her favorite "partner" had become Bobby and it was common for Kasey to catch them.

She never complained, however. Not anymore. No one listened even when she did so and she had decided it was better not to say anything anymore. Most everyone felt that she was just being whiny, petty, nitpicky, or whatever adjective they decided to use that day.

"I have a lot going for me, or at least that's what everyone tells me," Kasey concluded quietly, her head resting against the large plate glass window of her psychiatrist's office. 

This had become common practice for Kasey over the past few months. She would come into Dr. Rose's office who would scribble notes disinterestedly as she ranted about her life for a little while. Then the good doctor would up her Prozac, Zoloft, Celexa, or whatever the hell she was taking at the time and then she'd go home no better than when she had first came in but on the plus side, she was no worse either.

Her large brown eyes focused on the street outside the window, branching out in different directions like a welcoming escape. She shook her head vigorously trying to erase those thoughts from her mind. Circling around, she began making another circuit around her psychiatrist's office.

"Have you been taking your medicine as prescribed," Dr. Rose asked, peering at Kasey expectantly over the rims of her glasses. 

Kasey released a loud, exasperated sigh, "You know I do."

"Well," Dr. Rose started, steepling her fingertips, "I only know what you tell me."

Kasey sighed again, "Yes doc, I take my medicine as prescribed."

Dr. Rose scribbled something on her notepad and looked up at Kasey with a thoughtful expression.

"Kasey," she began, pulling her glasses off, "I don't know anything about your life except for what you tell me."

"I know Dr. Rose," Kasey replied with another audible sigh. "I guess I'm just frustrated."

"Any particular reason why?"

Kasey thought for a moment before responding with a shrug, "I guess it's just life in general."

Dr. Rose looked at Kasey considering her words, "Kasey, you know there is only so much that your medicine can do. I can prescribe you every medication available on the market and it will do no good on its own."

"I know that," Kasey snapped. 

"Then you need to take some action," Dr. Rose bit back.

Kasey slumped into a chair in front of the psychiatrist, "What do I do then? Should I tell my family and boyfriend off?  I'm pretty sure that when I do I'll be homeless." 

There was no being "pretty sure" about it. Kasey knew for a fact that if she said half of the things that were on her mind that her parents would disown her. She also knew that she wouldn't be able to count on Bobby. Having a live in girlfriend would cut into his fun too much.

Dr. Rose's stern expression softened as she saw the turmoil in Kasey's, "As your doctor, I can't force you to do anything. However as a concerned physician, I can advise you that you need to take some active interest in improving your life." 

"Like what?" Kasey asked playing with her long brown tresses in a somewhat nervous manner.

"I can't tell you that. That's for you to decide. As a matter of fact, I think that should be a homework assignment for you this week. Think of what you can do to change your life for the better and we will talk about them in a couple of weeks."

Kasey stood from her chair, "Do you have any suggestions?"

"Think of things that would be therapeutic for you. Just think of what would make you happy."

"Okay," Kasey responded quietly. 

She turned to leave thanking Dr. Rose and giving her a small wave over her shoulder. Handing the receptionist her copayment absentmindedly, the words continually rang in her ears. She left Dr. Rose's office, almost bumping into someone on the sidewalk.

“Excuse me,” she said quietly to the man in front of her.

She felt her breath catch in her throat as she looked up at him.Warm brown eyes peered at her as he responded with a shy smile. Kasey couldn’t help but notice him as she let him pass by her. Brown hair looking to be very soft to the touch and was neatly combed, framed his beautifully bronzed face. He was tall and thin but it was clear through his forest green shirt that he was mostly composed of lean muscle rather than being sickly.

“He is absolutely gorgeous,” she thought her eyes lingering on him a moment longer before she finally left the office and sighed heavily. “Things that make me wish my parents would let me dump the asshole.Oh, well…he’s probably married or gay anyway.”

On her way back to her car, she looked at all of the different offices located nearby. Someone had rented out the space next door to the allergists’ office and Kasey couldn’t help but notice that it was the office of a veterinarian.

"That's what you call irony,” Kasey thought to herself as she looked closer at the names adhered to the glass door.

"Sofia and Gabriel Yazzie,” she read aloud. “That's an unusual name. Must be a married couple."

She stared at the names a little longer contemplating whether being married would make her feel happier.

“Marrying Bobby definitely wouldn’t,” she commented softly as she made her way to her car.

She sighed almost sadly as she buckled her seatbelt. Starting the car, she pulled out of her parking place all the while thinking about the doctor's words. 

"What would make me happy?" she questioned as she made her way to work.

Chapter Text

Gabriel never was what anyone would call a people person. He was just never comfortable talking to anyone. To be honest, interacting with people in general was often a chore for him. There were three exceptions to this however.

Gabriel was very close to his mother and his little brother, Michael. He also had a good friend, Cyrillus Arthur Wilmington III, or Cyril. However, Gabriel was still a very reserved and quiet person, even with these three.

Though this was, Gabriel seemed to have an excellent connection with animals. He was far more open with them and seemed to really know what the animal was thinking. This, coupled with his mother's influence were the main factors in him deciding to become a veterinarian. 

He and his mother had opened a private practice in amongst a short strip of other offices including, of all things, an allergist. There was also a psychiatrist's office a couple of doors down. 

His mom and Cyril had told him that he should probably go there and get over some of his social anxiety. He wondered if they were being serious and whether it would honestly help.

Well that's what his mom had said. Cyril said something along the lines of, "that friggin' weird issue that only allows the ability to talk to animals." He had also went on to say that Gabriel needed to get laid and bestiality was frowned upon, which was not appreciated nor amusing. Cyril had no filter at times.

He had just left his office claiming that he needed something to drink. However, he was just saying that to my escape yet another round of this from his mother and Cyril. Worst of all, they had gotten Mikey in on the act. 

There were a few vending machines nearby so he had decided that would be a nice respite from the relentless badgering of his friend and family. He began to make the short journey when he noticed the door to Dr. Rose's office opening and a young woman around her early 20s stepped out.

"Wow!" he thought to himself as he looked at her.

Her large brown eyes peaked up at him from beneath a curtain of long, thick eyelashes. She blushed the most beautiful shade as her soft, petal pink lips turned upward into a bashful smile.

"Excuse me," she said politely stepping back to let him pass. 

"Say something stupid!" he reprimanded himself internally.

He smiled politely and nodded his head ever so slightly before continuing on his way.

"No!" his mind screamed at him. "Stupid! Stupid! Stupid!" he berated himself.

He kind of felt that if he had a window at the back of his head that his brain would have been staring at he like a kid longing to play outside on a rainy day. He stuffed his hands forcefully into his pockets frustrated with his shyness. Rounding the corner into the small alcove, the vending machines sat quietly humming almost as if they were taunting him. Gabriel knew good and well that they weren't really but that’s the way he always felt after a situation like this one.

Peaking out of the alcove, he smiled as he watched her examine the sign for his office. He watched her lips part slightly as she read his name aloud. Goddess if he could just hear her say his name once, he could die happily. 

He shook his head vigorously, trying to shake thoughts like that away. Stepping back into the alcove, he pulled out some money to buy himself a soda.

“This girl is a stranger to me and that’s the way it is probably going to stay,” he thought to himself. “Hell, more than likely, I will never see her again.”

A sudden wave of sadness hit him at that thought. He couldn’t help but take another look at her. Her brow furrowed slightly in thought before she slowly walked away.

“Goddess, she’s beautiful,” his voice sounding as if it would blend in with the vending machines.

He watched as she got into a powder blue Chevrolet. She sat there for a short while and he noticed, even from this distance, that there was a deep sadness about her. Suddenly, she seemed to pull herself from her thoughts, buckled her seat belt, and drove away.

His eyes lingered on the parking space for a long while before he finally shook himself free of the spell under which she had him. He finished buying his soda and made his way slowly back to his office feeling more frustrated with himself than ever before. Thinking once more of the mystery girl he had encountered, he made his way inside.

"Gabriel old bean!" Cyril's voice sounded as soon as Gabriel walked through the door to the waiting room. "I thought you bloody well got kidnapped or...”

His thought was halted as Gabriel grabbed his collar and dragged him to his office.

“This is a new development mate,” Cyril commented with his eyebrow raised. “You know that I’m not a shirt lifter.”

"No!" he exclaimed, rolling his eyes. "I met a girl you idiot."

"Wow! Really?! Congratulations mate!" Cyril replied with a grin. 

"Yeah, she almost ran into me as she was leaving Dr. Rose's office."

"What's the lucky lass' name?"

"I don't know," Gabriel admitted with a shrug.

Cyril looked at him completely confused, "Um...Gabe, mate, how do you not know the name of a girl you just met?"

Gabriel shrugged again.

Cyril pinched the bridge of his nose, slightly frustrated, "Well, what did you talk about?"

"She said excuse me..."

Cyril waited for more to the story. Realizing that was all, he groaned in frustration, "Did you actually talk to this lass?"

Gabriel blushed slightly. Looking down at his shoes, he shook his head slowly.

"Then you didn't meet anybody, you loony. You saw a girl."

"I know she has brown hair, brown eyes, and that she is one of the most beautiful women I've ever seen. She also drives a blue Chevy and she stopped outside the office to check the sign so she probably has a..."

"Wait a tick..." Cyril interrupted. "How do you know what she drives and that she stopped to read the sign?"

"I watched her," he replied, hiding his face behind a chart.

"Are you completely mental?" Cyril asked, his brow knitted.

Gabriel cocked his head, "What do you mean?"

Cyril groaned and pulled his hand down his face, "Not many people like it when you watch them. It's especially dodgy when you note what they drive."

Gabriel glared at his friend, "Cyril, you make it sound like I followed her and raped her in the parking lot or something."

"You're the one raving on like a loon," Cyril replied.

Gabriel flopped into his desk chair, "I can't help it, Cyril. I've never felt like this before. Her eyes, her smile, everything about her had me completely floored." 

"Well, here's an idea. If you see her again, you may want to actually try speaking to her," Cyril replied, crossing his arms over his chest and leaning against the desk.

"That's helpful," Gabriel commented, rolling his eyes.

"Well what do you bloody well expect me to do? Cyberstalk her?"

"You would do that?" Gabriel asked a little too hopefully.

"No you loony!" Cyril cried.

Gabriel looked down at his hands not sure why he was feeling the way he was to begin with. He knew that he would probably have to get over whatever this feeling was. Knowing full and well that you need to know something about a person, he knew it couldn't be love. However, he was also quite sure that it wasn't merely lust.

He sighed, sadly as new thoughts began to form of those warm brown eyes peering into his very being. Cyril looked over at his friend. He had never seen him look so miserable.

He groaned loudly, "Listen mate, it's jolly brilliant that you're finally noticing girls but..." 

"I know there's nothing that can be done about it. There was just this weird connection to her," he said shaking his head to erase any of the thoughts that were slowly creeping back into his consciousness. 

Cyril watched Gabriel a moment longer, before sighing in exasperation, "Gormless bastard... You may see her again. I mean if she is a patient at Dr. Rose's office, there is a chance you will see her again."

"I know that too..." Gabriel replied quietly. 

"Blooming hell!" Cyril exclaimed. "What is your bloody problem now?"

"It's going to be the same shit again and again, Cyril."

Suddenly the door to Gabriel's office swung open with a bang. There in the door stood a woman much shorter than Gabriel in her forties.

"Gabriel Yazzie! I should have known that you would be in here goofing off with Cyril!" she admonished. "Am I going to have to take care of all of the patients on my own today?"

"Sorry mom," he replied. "Let me walk Cyril out and I'll get right to it."

"Hello Mrs. Yazzie," Cyril greeted. "You are looking lovely as always."

"Yes, I have a special glow about me when my son wants to be a no good lay about like his friend."

Cyril smirked at her, "You know your son would be lost without me love."

"Maybe you should be the lost one," she said with a smile. 

Cyril grinned at her and took a bow, "I shall take my leave then." 

He gave her a quick hug and a kiss on the forehead. She returned the gesture before shifting to a more motherly tone.

"Will you be over for dinner tonight?"

"I have to get back to the old grind tonight."

"Well I see you in the morning then," she said, walking with them into the hall.

"Cheery bye Sofie love."

Gabriel walked Cyril the short distance to the door.

"I'll talk to you later man," Gabriel said, opening the glass door.

"See you, mate," he turned to leave but stopped. "Gabe, if you see this bird of yours, please, talk to her." 

"I'll try," Gabriel said with his usual shy smile.

"See ya later mate."

Gabriel walked back into the waiting room slowly. He knew Cyril was right but the hard part was enacting that fact. The trek to the front desk seemed to be a long one as he felt the eyes of his patients' owners upon him. Taking a look at the sign in sheet, he found the name of his first patient and threw himself into his work with thoughts of the beautiful girl who had captivated him so constantly in the back of his mind.

Chapter Text

Kasey pulled into her parking space at her father’s publishing company. She hated her job but it paid decently enough plus it came with some pretty awesome health insurance. She also shared an office with two other young women with whom she had become close and could even call them her friends, especially Melanie.

Walking through the large glass doors, she placed her purse on the table to be scanned by security. She did not really understand the need of the increased security but it did keep her safe and she was thankful for that. Laying her keys on the small gray pan on the table, stepped through the metal detector.

Picked up her purse on the other side of the x-ray, she waved at the two security guards and made her way slowly to her office. Upon entering the room, she was immediately assaulted by a young woman with long pink hair flowing loose against her soft heart shaped face.

“Where have you been?” the young woman asked slapping Kasey’s shoulder roughly. “You’re like, totally late! I thought that maybe you had finally gotten rid of your douche bag boyfriend and ran away!”

Kasey caught a glimpse of Jeanne’s green hair barely visible behind her computer. She greeted Jeanne who replied with a simple, timid wave.

“I had a doctor’s appointment Melanie,” Kasey answered rolling her eyes.

“Oh,” she replied, sounding almost disappointed. “Like, I was hoping it would be the other thing.”

She walked back to her desk and pulled out a bunch of photographs of different articles of clothing and accessories.

“A-anything wrong?” inquired Jeanne’s quiet voice.

“No, I just had an appointment with Dr. Rose,” Kasey answered.

“Dr. Rose? You mean, like, the psychiatrist?” Melanie asked looking up from the layout she was preparing.

“Yeah,” Kasey answered simply. “I’ve been going there for a few months now.”

“A-are you okay?” Jeanne asked, her voice thick with concern.

“I’m fine Jeanne,” Kasey lied with a smile.

Kasey had become quite good at lying to everyone. She wasn’t fine and she knew it. If she were to be 100 percent honest with herself, she didn’t know if she ever would be but she was trying.
However, Melanie was always the first to tell her and everyone else in the room that she was lying. Kasey never was sure whether she was the only one that could see through this or if she was just the only one that was mouthy enough to call her on it. It was also possible that she was the only one that cared enough to notice.

“That’s total bullshit and you know it,” she said, flipping her pink hair behind her haughtily.

Kasey glared at Melanie who remained unphased.

“What? You honestly think you’re fooling anybody with that totally fake smile and forced cheery tone?”

Kasey looked at Jeanne who up until then had been peeking out from behind her monitor. By this time, however, she had gone back to doing whatever she was doing on her computer.

“What do you want me to do Melanie?” Kasey asked in exasperation.

“Oh my Goddess Kasey! It is like, totally obvious that you are wicked unhappy.”

“What can I possibly do about that Melanie?” Kasey said, slumping into the chair behind her desk. “If I do what makes me happy, my parents will be quite angry. I can’t break up with Bobby because that would mean making my parents angry. Making my parents angry means getting fired and kicked out of my house. Honestly, if you have any kind of plan, I’m open to suggestions.”

“W-why not apply for another job?” Jeanne’s small voiced called from behind her computer. “I-it may not be a great job b-but there’s a restaurant down the street from my house that wants someone to t-take care of their garden. My f-friend’s father owns the restaurant so I c-can probably help you get the job.

“My boyfriend also said that his mom needs someone to r-raise flowers for their shop. I th-think that Bastion would be okay with y-you raising some in his garden. B-both would help you earn enough m-money to move into your own place.”

“What makes you think that I would want to do something like that?” Kasey asked raising her eyebrow.

“I d-don’t know,” Jeanne said, lowering her head. “G-gardening c-can make you feel more p-positively about yourself and k-keep you active which m-most people find therapeutic.”

“Well let’s just get me a pair of overalls and call me farmer Kasey then!” Kasey snapped, rolling her eyes.

Jeanne shrunk further into her chair, her eyes focusing on anything but Kasey.

Kasey let out a frustrated groan and tilted her head back, looking up at the ceiling, “I’m sorry Jeanne. I know your just trying to help and I’m just being a total bitch.”

Jeanne looked up at Kasey, a soft smile playing across her lip, “I-it’s okay. Y-you’re going through a l-lot right now.”

“Maybe I should look into those jobs. It would at least help me to save up a little bit of money. I would still be homeless though. I have a little bit of money saved up but…” she trailed off still feeling that all was hopeless.

“You can totally live with me until you’re able to afford your own place!” Melanie said clapping her hands excitedly.

Kasey looked at the two women who were both staring at her expectantly. Melanie’s offer was quite tempting but she couldn’t impose like that. She shook her head and looked down at her desk.

“I can’t do that,” she responded quietly.

“Like, why not?!” Melanie asked in frustration.

“I don’t want my parents to disown me. Plus, I have a dog and I don’t know if your building will let me keep him.”

“Okay, first off, who gives a damn if your parents are happy or not?! They obviously don’t care if their daughter is happy. Secondly, you are totally my friend and I so want to see you smiling more. How big is your dog?”

“He’s a miniature bull terrier, so about this big?” she indicated with her hands.

Melanie clapped her hands in excitement again, “You are like, totally in luck! My building accepts small pets!”

Kasey considered Melanie’s offer again. She wanted away from her parents and to be able to live her life without being forced to act a certain way or to basically be her parents’ puppet but something was still holding her back.

She hung her head and shook it slowly eliciting an exasperated groan from Melanie, “Why the hell not?!”

“I just can’t,” Kasey replied quietly not making eye contact with her friend.

“M-maybe you should think a-about it?” Jeanne stated.

Melanie nodded her head enthusiastically at Jeanne and looked back at Kasey, still shaking her head.

Kasey let out a small breath of resignation, “Fine, I’ll think about it.”

“Yay!” Melanie cried, bouncing on the balls of her feet.

“Enough drama!” Kasey exclaimed. “We have work to do.”

“Ugh! You’re like, such a drag sometimes, Kasey. Maybe living with me will make you somewhat fun!”

Kasey rolled her eyes as she turned to her computer, “Maybe living with me will turn you into a drag.”

“As if!” Melanie replied, flipping her hair behind her shoulder and sauntering back to her desk. She smoothed her hands down the entire length of her body. “How could I possibly be anything but fun with a body like this?”

Kasey shook her head but laughed in spite of herself. Rolling her eyes, she turned her attention to the computer. Thoughts about her psychiatrist’s words and Melanie’s offer began reeling through her head. An unexpected thought made a guest appearance within her conscious memory of the tall, dark skinned man that she had encountered on her way out of Dr. Rose’s office. She shook this thought free from her mind and returned to the spreadsheet she was working on.

Part of her really would have liked moving in with Melanie but she really hated to impose on anyone like that. She knew something was going to have to give but she didn’t really want think about the consequences of when that day came. Little did she know that that day was approaching sooner than she would have ever thought possible.

Chapter Text

It had been over a week since Kasey’s last session with Dr. Rose and the conversation with Melanie and life had gone on as usual. She was still miserable and no closer to figuring out what she should do to change that. Her parents weren’t going to change and neither was Bobby so it was up to her to figure out what to do.

She pulled into the driveway of her parent’s house and sat there for some time, staring at the steering wheel, deep in thought. Her mind always seemed to circle back to Melanie’s offer and Jeanne’s. Then it would settle on the man she had almost run into at Dr. Rose’s office. She didn’t really know why he was on her mind so frequently, but he was.

Sighing heavily, she turned off the ignition and stepped out of her car. She noted that Bobby's Hummer was parked out front and groaned internally knowing what was awaiting her. Taking a deep breath, trying to relax, she turned off her car and made her way inside.

Upon entering the living room, there was no sign of her sister or Bobby. The more sensible side of her had screamed to head to her room, lock the door, and to listen to music through her earbuds as loudly as possible. However, the more irrational, masochistic part of her wanted to search the house and catch them...again.

Her masochist self won out in the end as it often did. She checked their usual spots. When she did not find them in the bathroom, linen closet, or backyard, she decided to look in the kitchen. 

She opened the swinging door just a crack and there they were. Mackenzie with her skirt hiked up to her ass, was sitting atop the kitchen counter. Her long slender legs were wrapped around Bobby. 

Bobby had one hand splayed on her back, pressing her against him. His pants hung low on his hips and he was kissing her deeply, clearly thrusting his tongue into her mouth. The both of them seemed completely oblivious to the fact that Kasey had entered the room. 

Kasey watched them for a moment. There was a time when she had been jealous of all the different women he had been with. Sometimes it still hurt both that he was cheating on her a lot and also because he had never even touched her. Mostly, she never could understand what was so wrong with her.

She walked over to the fruit bowl, taking a golden apple from the top and walked over to the sink. Finally deciding to make her presence known, she cleared her throat and proceeded to wash her apple. When that didn't work she turned the cold water on full blast and shot them both with the sprayer.

Mackenzie screeched in surprise and clasped her shirt tightly around the red lacy bra that concealed her breasts. Bobby pulled up his pants, adjusting himself and buckling his belt in a relatively quick fashion. Both looked at their assailant. Mackenzie glared upon finding her older sister.

"Goddess! Do you ever knock?!" she shrieked. 

Kasey cocked her eyebrow, "You're fucking my so-called boyfriend in the kitchen."

"Fucking?" Bobby questioned indignantly. "Kasey, my love, I would never do anything like that to you."

"Right...I forgot that you're still a virgin and saving yourself for whenever you marry me? You must have just been fighting with Makenzie for the last piece of gum or shielding your penis from a random bear or something as equally absurd."

He smiled at her sheepishly and shrugged. Kasey rolled her eyes and turned to the door.

"Whatever...It's almost five o'clock though. You better be wrapping things up before mother and father get home."

Mackenzie and Bobby looked at each other and back to her, thoroughly confused. 

"Why would I care if mom and dad found out?"

"Well wouldn't it ruin that oh so perfect, good boy image you have going?" she inquired indicating Bobby.

They looked at each other questioningly again before realization struck.

"You honestly think that mom and dad didn't know?" she asked disbelievingly.

Kasey furrowed her brow in confusion, "What are you talking about?"

"Are you stupid? Mom and dad were the ones that pushed us together."

Kasey's mouth fell agape. Her mother and father knew what was going on and they forced her to stay with him. She was completely speechless. Part of her didn't want to believe it but the other part of her knew it wasn't beyond possibility.

The part that bothered her the most wasn't that her parents pushed Mackenzie and Bobby together. It was more that they knew he doing this. They even made her apologize when she had confronted him. She was free of him and they made her beg him to take her back. 

Kasey found enough of a voice to form one word, "Why?"

"Isn't it obvious?" Mackenzie asked, flipping her long blonde hair behind her shoulder.

Kasey merely shook her head, words continuing to fail her.

"Because they feel that I would be a better match for Bobby and that we would make a far more attractive couple than him and less than average older sister. Plus," she traced her long slender fingers down Bobby’s chest, “I wanted him.”

"Then why force me to be with him?!" Kasey pushed out of her mouth. "Why not just put you together and be done with it?!"

"Because I'm underage stupid," she spat.

"That doesn't make sense."

"Think about it genius. Why would he be here all the time without having a reason. Dating, banging, or whatever an adolescent wouldn’t be good for his image either. Would it baby?” her voice dropped into a softer tone when she spoke to him.

Kasey looked at Bobby who had been silent up until now, "You went along with this?"

"Well yeah," he responded with a shrug. "She's way hotter than you and doesn’t really care if I sleep around as long as I allow her the same courtesy."

Mackenzie cleared her throat, getting his attention. He turned to find her with an extremely fake pout.

“Oh and as long as we give it to each other double,” he growled as he buried his face into her neck.

Mackenzie giggled and squirmed against him. Kasey stared at them, her eyes blinking back tears rapidly. She refused to cry in front of these two.Suddenly, the door opened and in walked Julia Davenport followed closely by Ezra. 

"Robert dear!" Julia called in her faux sweet voice. "Have you come to see my beautiful Kasey?"

Kasey turned and glared at her mother who was immediately taken aback by her reaction.

“Kasey, my dear, whatever is the matter?” her father questioned.

“She just found out that you know about me and Bobby,” she stated in sheer amusement.

“Kasey dear,” her mother began placing a long slender hand on Kasey’s shoulder. “Surely you can see they make a far superior couple in the end.”

Kasey said nothing. She stood completely still, her hands balled into tight fists at her side. They knew everything. Her mother’s voice was replaced by her father’s his hands on both shoulders, shaking her.

“Kasey! Stop this nonsense and talk to your mother!” he commanded.

A million different thoughts ran through her head before finally settling on Melanie’s words. Her family didn’t care whether she was happy or not. They were using her all along and for what? Some kind of image thing. None of this make sense to her.

“Kasey, this will benefit everyone in the end. Especially you!” her mother’s words pierced through the bubble of words that had built up within her.

“How the hell would any of this benefit me?!” she snapped, her mother’s eyes widening in shock at the sudden outburst.

“Kasey! Don’t you dare use that tone with your mother!” her father reprimanded, waiving a finger at her.

“Don’t use that tone?!” Kasey asked indignantly. “You people have been conspiring what I have to say is the STUPIDEST sounding plan that I have ever heard and I have been stuck in the middle of it for far too long!”

“You only have to go along with it for another few years and then we will try to find someone…suitable for someone of your unique brand.”

Kasey stared at them blankly, completely at a loss for words. The question that had been weighing on her mind the most during this entire ordeal came out as little more than a whisper.

“Don’t you care whether I’m happy or not?”

“Kasey dear,” her mother began, “we have all had to do things that we were not proud of to make it in this world and yes, most of it would tend to make a person unhappy.”

“I don’t want that kind of life!” Kasey growled through gritted teeth. “I refuse to be a pawn in this twisted world that you live in.”

Her father grabbed her arm, roughly pulling her back toward him, “You will do everything that is asked of you and you will do it with a smile. I don’t care what kind of substance you have to ingest in order to achieve this but MAKE IT WORK!”

Kasey glared at her father, staring him down for some time before finally speaking, “And what if I refuse father?”

He looked at her, completely taken aback by her question, “I will have no choice but to eliminate all ties with you.”

Julia gasped slightly, her long fingers covering her mouth. Her eyes darted between Ezra and Kasey, awaiting one of them to give into the other. Finally, after what felt like an eternity, Kasey finally spoke.

“Fine,” she said quietly and turned to leave the room.

Ezra held a smug smile on his face as he turned back to the other people in the room. Julia gave a soft sigh of relief.

A short time later, Kasey reentered, her purse thrown over her shoulder, a small carry on bag in one hand and the end of Buster’s leash in the other.

“What is the meaning of this?” Ezra questioned.

“I’m leaving,” Kasey stated simply. “If you care, I have a friend who said I can live with her for a while and another friend who said she can get me a job. Just letting you know that I will no longer be a part of your life.”

With those last words, Kasey left the house she had known for years without so much as a second glance. She was afraid to start something new but when it came right down to it, she needed to do something. In the end, she knew she deserved more than being a pawn for her parents’ weird society games.

Chapter Text

Kasey checked the address that Melanie had written for her. Verifying that she did have the right address, she stepped out of her vehicle with Buster in tow. She slung her bag and purse over her shoulder and made her way to the door.

She hit the button for the apartment number Melanie had given her. Waiting patiently for an answer, she started orienting herself to her surroundings. It appeared to be a very nice part of town with multiple business and beautifully kept buildings.

She noticed a few of the people walking along the sidewalk. There was a young couple with their arms wrapped around each other. A woman and two children dancing excitedly around her. A young couple pushing a stroller around also caught her eye. She stared at them with a wistful smile, not really sure what was causing the pang of sadness.

Suddenly a masculine voice came over the intercom. The voice was gravelly and came out as more of a grumble. 

"Who's there?" he demanded.

Kasey couldn't speak. She tried several times in vain but only incoherent words surfaced. Had Melanie tricked her into thinking she had somewhere to go? Hot, stinging tears began to prick at her eyes. She turned to leave, not sure where to go.

"Hey!" the voice rumbled behind her. 

Kasey stopped, looking over her shoulder at the intercom.

"What's your name girly?"

"K-Kasey," she stated through the tears threatening to erupt.

"You lookin' for Melanie?" he asked. 

"Y-yes," she managed to squeak.

"Hang on a second."

Nothing but silence came from the speaker for some time. Kasey looked around a few more times thinking that this may have been a bad idea. She felt that she was so close to being free and that freedom was being torn from her.

Suddenly a more familiar voice erupted from the intercom, "Oh my goddess, Kasey?!"

Kasey immediately felt that a weight had been lifted from her. The corners of her mouth turned upward in a way that felt as though they were going to cause her face to break. She released a soft chuckle of relief as she addressed the speaker.

"Yeah," she answered, tugging at her hair nervously. "Can I come up?"

A loud buzzing followed by a soft click could be heard a second later. Kasey pulled gently on the door, testing to see whether it would truly open or not. The door opened easily, revealing the entryway.

Walking through the door, Kasey was completely taken aback by how luxurious the interior was. The white marble floors were polished to high shine almost mimicking white gold. On either side of the door, there was a long marble staircase leading up to the next floor. Black wrought iron railings in an intricate leaf pattern contrasted nicely against the pure white steps.

Kasey wondered fleetingly whether any of her father's business contacts lived here. Realizing this wasn't exactly a pleasant topic for her, she quickly shook out any thoughts of her family. She got to the center of the two staircases when her friend, and hopefully new roommate, came bounding down the steps.

“Kasey?!” Melanie called excitedly. “Like, what are you doi…Oh my goddess, what happened? You totally look terrible.”

Kasey blinked her eyes several times, fighting the tears that threatened to fall, “It’s a long story,” she rolled her lip between her teeth nervously. “Is your offer to let me live with you still good?”

“Totally!” Melanie exclaimed grabbing the carry on bag from Kasey. “Come on, I’ll introduce you to Grampy Gus.”

“Who’s Grampy Gus?” Kasey asked, tilting her head and following Melanie up the stares.

“My grandfather. I, like, live with him.”

"And he's cool with some random girl that he doesn't know moving in with you guys?"

"Totally! Grampy may be a grump at times but he totally has a heart of gold and would like do anything to help someone."

"If you're sure," Kasey replied reluctantly.

Melanie hugged her friend gently, wishing that things had been better for her. They stood like that for a few moments, Melanie stroking Kasey’s back and trying to convey that she could always count on her. She stepped back, offering Kasey a smile, receiving a sad smile in return.

Grabbing Kasey’s hand, Melanie led Kasey to her apartment. Along the way, Kasey filled her in on everything that happened or at least a condensed version of it. 

"So, like, your mom and dad wanted to make your sister happy so they totally kicked you in the ass to do it?" Melanie asked, trying to comprehend the situation as best as she could.

"Basically..." Kasey replied, still not fully understanding herself.

"And this was like supposed to be in your best interest?"

"Pretty much..."

"That like totally makes no sense!"

"I know..."

They stopped outside of the apartment labeled 320C. Kasey waited patiently as Melanie pulled her keys out of her pocket and unlocked the door.

"Grampy! We're back!" Melanie called.

"What the hell are you doing back already?!" called a very irritated voice.

"I like told you I was just going downstairs for a minute!" Melanie shouted back.

"Yeah but when you say a minute you mean almost five hours."

Melanie walked toward the room where the voice was coming from, "Like, why are you so pissed any...oh my goddess! Grampy put some clothes on!"

"Why should I?!"

"Because I, like, have company!"

"Afraid he'll feel inadequate?"

"Grampy it's, like, the girl that I told you about! The one that, like, needs to stay with us for a little while?!"

"Oh...afraid she'll like what she sees?"

"Ew!"

"What?! Why as far as older men go, I'm hot!"

"EW!"

"Why if I were a few years younger, I would make it so that your friend would never be satisfied with another man."

"Ew ew ew!!!"

"Well maybe. Is she hot?"

"Would you like go somewhere?!"

"I ordered pay per view and took a Viagra and I'm not wasting it!"

"Ugh! Can't you at least go to your room?!"

"Nope, this TV's bigger."

"Ugh! Fine! But you like totally better have clothes on when we get back!"

"I can't guarantee that!" the voice called after Melanie as she exited the living room.

Melanie came back to where Kasey was waiting. She took Kasey's purse and bag, placing them in a room off to the side of the door. Unhooking Buster's leash, she let him run on into the apartment.

"Like, I'll give you a tour later. Right now, there is totally something that no one wants to see in the living room," she said shuddering slightly.

She grabbed Kasey's hand, dragging her back out of the apartment and slamming the door behind them.

"I'm really hoping that I don't have to sleep on whatever surface your grandfather is sitting on," Kasey said looking back at the door.

Melanie laughed, "No, we actually have three bedrooms. Just for future reference, like don't sit on the green recliner though."

"Noted," Kasey replied, crinkling her nose.

"So, like, what do you want to do?" Melanie asked.

Kasey thought for a moment before answering, "Do you know where Jeanne lives?"

"Yeah?" Melanie answered cocking her head slightly.

"Well, she said she could possibly get me a job. I'd like to get started with that as soon as possible."

"Goddess, you've totally had a hard day. Getting a job can, like, wait a few days. Grampy and I seriously don't mind."

"But I do," Kasey replied. "I don't want to put you two out any longer than I have to."

Melanie blew a strand of hair out of her eyes, "Fine, but only if you're sure you're ready."

"I'm sure," Kasey said with a grin. "I kind of have to be."

Chapter Text

Jeanne wasn’t kidding when she had told Kasey that she could get her a job. The whole situation seemed to be like a bizarre game of telephone. Jeanne’s friend Elise was the daughter of Bastion, the owner of the Skytree Cafe. Bastion also owned a small garden and greenhouse that supplied fresh fruits and vegetables to the restaurant a short distance away. Elise’s husband was in charge of it and needed help with planting, harvesting, and just general labor overall.

In less than 24 hours, Kasey had done more manual labor than she had ever done in her entire life. The work was rather difficult but she had to admit that she enjoyed it immensely and it was definitely better than editing magazine articles any day. She didn’t know why but coming home from work, her clothes covered in dirt and clinging to her sweat soaked skin, seemed to be gratifying. Though this was true, it felt even better to take a nice long shower afterward.

She turned on some warm water, peeling off her clothing and sighing in relief at the cool sensation that swept over her. Stepping into the shower, she immediately felt her muscles begin to relax. She let the water beat down on her for a long moment before scrubbing off the dirt and grime from her day’s work.

Once she had finished with her shower, Kasey looked around realizing she had made a big mistake. Her soft terry cloth robe that she wore frequently was in the last load of laundry she had placed in the dryer. Being used to having this handy, she had forgotten to bring a change of clothes with her. Resigning herself to the only option she could think of, she wrapped her towel around her.

She peered out of the door, looking in both directions. Deciding that the coast was clear, she tightened the grip on her towel and made her way toward her room. She had almost made it, breathing a sigh of relief as she reached the door. That is until Gus came out of one of the other rooms.

"What are you doing?" he asked.

Kasey jumped, turning quickly to see a very naked Gus standing behind her. Doing the only thing that she could think of, she screamed.

Gus cocked his eyebrow and tilted his head in a way reminiscent of Melanie.

"You scared the hell out of me!" she yelled.

"Sorry," he commented with a shrug. "Didn't expect anybody to be home. Are you always home like this? You seem to be home a lot. That would really cut into my alone time. Those are nice by the way," he concluded pointing at her breasts.

Kasey looked down, not realizing until now that her towel had slipped. She adjusted her towel and glared at him. 

"What?" he asked, his head still tilted. 

Kasey blushed furiously, unable to say anything. She wasn't really sure how to reply. Instead, she settled for pointing at the area of his genitals. 

He stared at her blankly for some time before realization hit him.

"Oh, you're not my type girly," he said, shrugging again. 

Kasey's mouth dropped open. She wasn't sure whether to feel relieved or offended.

"Go put clothes on girly and go somewhere," he said, indicating the doors. "Melanie's gone most of the time. I don't care if you stay here for a while but I don't need some youngster here all the time."

Kasey's parents never were much for letting her do her own thing. Sure, she had been able to go a few places that were considered fun but it was rare. Most of the time, she had to go with her sister or Bobby or both.

Mackenzie was always allowed to do what she wanted when she wanted but Kasey was a different story. She was always expected to be at home by a certain time. Being seen out in public alone or with a friend was also a foreign concept considering she had to keep up the appearance of being the happy subservient girlfriend and daughter. Needless to say, the idea would take some getting used to.

"Go out somewhere and have some fun."

"Well what do you suggest I do?" she asked, crossing her arms over her chest.

"Movies? Library? Gun range?" he shrugged. "I don't really know what you young people are into these days.

"I don't really know of anything to do...I was just planning on staying in tonight..."

"Surely there's something you want to do?" he pressed, getting frustrated with not being left alone.

"Well, I do need to take Buster to the vet..." she said, thinking of things to do.

"You sure know how to live girly..."

"What the hell is that supposed to mean?!"

"Just that you're too young to have such a boring life," he answered. 

"Do you want me to leave or not?" she snapped back.

He sighed and shook his head, "You go live your exciting life of going to work, coming home, and then taking animals to the vet then."

She turned, placing her hand on the doorknob.

"At least wear something sexy," he called.

"What? Why?!" Kasey asked, looking back at him.

"So maybe you can find yourself a fella," he answered.

Kasey furrowed her brow, "I don't need nor want a boyfriend right now."

"Well at least go get laid."

She glared at him.

"What? Take it from someone old. Life's too short to live like an old prude."

"I'll keep that in mind," she replied, turning back to the door.

“That’s pretty nice too…” Gus commented.

It was then that Kasey became aware of the breeze blowing through the back of her towel. She let out a small, embarrassed squeak, gripping the towel tightly in the rear and running through the bedroom door.

“Oh come on you old prude, it’s not like I haven’t seen one before. Besides, I done told you that you ain’t my type.”

“You’ve made that abundantly clear, thank you!” she shouted through the door.

“Well, I ain’t saying that you’re not hot or nothing like that! Quite the opposite actually” Gus shouted back.

Kasey didn’t know whether she should be flattered or disturbed.

“I just like the bigger girls!”

“Good to know!” Kasey shouted back.

“So what are you doing now?!”

“Putting on clothes!” Kasey answered.

“Something sexy I hope!”

“Stop telling me to wear something sexy!”

“I need my alone time!”

“Would you go somewhere?!” Kasey asked somewhat frustrated.

“I have no where to be until you go live your exciting vet going life!” Gus retorted.

“Well if some pervert wasn’t lurking outside my door telling me to wear something sexy so he can have more time alone, I would’ve been done by now!”

“Fine! Just don’t look in the living room when you leave or you won’t like what you see!”

Kasey shuddered slightly at the thought of what he could have meant by this. She finished getting ready and grabbed Buster’s leash deciding that it would probably be in her best interest to go ahead and leave.

Chapter Text

The next couple of weeks passed without much event. Gabriel had hoped that maybe he would forget about his mystery girl. Unfortunately, that was not the case. It seemed like the more time that passed, the more she was on his mind.

The fantasies that played in his head ranged from something as tame as holding her as they watched a movie on the couch to something as wild as taking her on his desk. He wasn't quite sure why this girl had played such a big part in his thoughts lately but she did. If he were to be completely honest with himself, he didn't really care. All he really wanted to know was about her. 

Every morning since he was a child, he started his day in more or less the same way. He would wake up, eat breakfast, take a shower, brush his teeth, get dressed, and then do whatever needed done that day. In all honesty, the rest of his day was just as routine. He would go to work, come home, take care of Max, the family's dog, wash up, eat dinner with his mom and Michael, take Max for a walk, then go to bed. Every single day was just as boring and routine as the last. However, since running into his mystery girl, his routine was shaken quite significantly.

He had to wake up earlier in the mornings to take care of the results of his dreams the night before. Daydreaming had become commonplace and he would sometimes run over Max's food bowl and water bowl. His mom also had to yell to get his attention, much like now.

"Gabriel!" her voice sounded through his beautiful daydream.

He groaned as he came out of it, wanting nothing more than to continue. Well, he did want more. For his daydream to become reality.

"Sorry mom," he answered absentmindedly. "Did you need something?"

She placed her hands on her hips, "I want my son to start doing his job and to get his head out of his ass!"

Gabriel looked down at his hands and responded more sincerely, "Sorry mom..."

She walked over to him, hugging him gently, "Gabe, something is clearly bothering you. What's wrong?"

He returned the hug and sighed heavily into his mother's shoulder. 

"I honestly don't know what's wrong with me..." he admitted honestly.

"Did something happen?"

"Nothing major," he shrugged.

"But something did?" she asked, taking a step back to look at him.

He sighed again, "There's this girl. I've seen her around here a few times but have not been able to work up the nerve to talk to her. I think about her almost constantly and I don't know what to do."

"Oh Gabe," his mother began, tears welling up in her eyes, "I'm so happy!"

Gabriel looked at his mother completely stupefied, "What? Why?!"

"Because I was afraid you were going to die a virgin and I would never have any grand babies!"

"First off, ew mom. Secondly, I haven't even talked to her. Thirdly, you have two children!" 

She pulled a handkerchief from her pocket, dabbing her eyes, "I don't have much hope for Mikey either."

"I'm sure Michael would be thrilled to know that mom."

"So who is this girl?" she asked 

"I just told you mom. I don't know!"

"Is she pretty? Is she hot?" she thought for a second before asking her next question. "Does she have nice boobs?"

"What?! Mom!"

"She must be! That's why you've been masturbating so much lately!"

"Oh my Goddess this conversation is not happening," Gabriel answered, talking more to himself than to Sofia.

Suddenly, the door to his office opened revealing a somewhat embarrassed receptionist.

"Mr. Yazzie, your two o'clock is here," she said closing the door before he could reply.

He got up to head toward the examination room but stopped when his mom grabbed his arm. 

"You heard the lady, I gotta go mom."

"I know," she replied, releasing his arm. "Just, be happy Gabe."

He smiled at her lovingly and bent down to give her a kiss on the cheek, "I love you mom."

Grabbing the chart of what appeared to be a new patient, he walked down the hall to the third exam room and opened the door. There, standing next to a black and white bull terrier was the girl that had occupied him so much lately. 

He felt his mouth dropped open. His mind was completely blank and he was losing all ability to think and control his body. He finally came to when he felt the chart slipping from his grasp. 

He shook his head several times to regain his senses. She was even more beautiful than he had remembered. The smell of strawberries and vanilla wafted from her intoxicatingly.

"Hi!" he greeted a little louder than he had intended. 

She jumped slightly, "Oh hi," she replied with a slightly nervous sounding giggle.

"Sorry," he said, ruffling his hair. "I didn't mean to startle you."

"Oh it's fine," she said waving off his concern. "Maybe we can call us even after I ran into you."

He chuckled slightly and smiled at her shyly, "I'm Gabriel," he introduced, extending his hand.

"Kasey," she responded, shaking his hand.

Gabriel's heart felt like it was going to beat it's way out of his chest. He had never felt anything like this before. She blushed that gorgeous shade of pink and pushed a stray strand of hair behind her ear. 

"Oh!" she exclaimed suddenly, "This is Buster. He's the one you really want to see."

Gabriel looked at her confused, "No...I've been wanting to see you," he thought to himself.

"Oh, yes of course," he said, shaking his head and walking over to the table.

"Hey buddy," he greeted scratching Buster behind the ears.

Buster's tongue lolled out of his mouth as he panted happily.  

Gabriel performed Buster's examination while talking to Kasey amicably. He was surprised by how easy it was to talk to her and by everything they seemed to have in common. They talked about everything from movies to books to concerts they had been to and even some mild flirting slipped into the conversation a few times or at least he hoped that she was flirting with him. 

There was little that Gabriel wanted more than for this to continue. Whatever the feeling was that he was currently experiencing, They talked a little longer until the door to the exam room opened slightly.

"Sorry to interrupt," Sofia spoke softly, "but I need to borrow Gabriel for a second."

"Oh we were just wrapping things up anyway," he answered his voice dropping in disappointment. He couldn't help but notice that Kasey seemed to be feeling the same. Then again, it may have been wishful thinking on his part.

"What were you needing mom?"

He noticed Kasey's sudden change of expression. It seemed like an odd mixture of confusion, realization, and then relief. 

"The Johnsons brought their ferret in again," she answered, rolling her eyes.

"The balloons again?"

His question was met with a simple nod.

"I'll be right there," he sighed, shaking his head before turning back to Kasey. "Buster seems to be in excellent health," he assured her, scratching him behind the ears again.

"That's good to hear," she replied with a smile that made Gabriel feel as though he would melt. 

"So...Sofia Yazzie is your mom?" she asked casually.

"Yeah, she's part of the reason I decided to become a vet."

"Yazzie is such an uncommon name. I thought that it may have been your wife," she said laughing slightly.

He laughed in return not really thinking of the possibility that she may be married. Trying to think of a way to ask without sounding too desperate, he decided that maybe a more direct approach would be the best.

"No, I'm not married. Never have been. I'm not dating anyone either. How about you?" he blurted out.

"Smooth..." he thought to himself.

She giggled sweetly before answering, "No, I'm not married or dating anyone and have never been married either."

"Gabriel!" his mother's voice sounded through the room, causing both people to jump.

"I'm coming mom!" Gabriel called irritably.

Kasey smiled up at him again, her brown eyes warming every inch of his being. His eyes darted to her lips, wondering what it would feel like to steal a kiss from them, to feel her soft, full lips pressed against his. He leaned forward, trying to decide whether that would be a good idea or not.

"Um..." he hesitated. "Let me get you a few things for Buster!" he exclaimed quickly, chickening out at the last second but still not wanting his time with her to come to an end.

He handed her several samples of different flea and tick treatments as well as medicines for worms. Some of the different animal feed he had concocted also made their way into the mix. He had bagged up a few packs of it and handed it to her, her fingers gently grazing his when she reached for them.

"Thank you, Dr. Yazzie," she said, her voice sounding more sultry than before.

"Please, call me Gabe," he replied feeling as though she had knocked the wind out of him.

Her fingertips lingered on his a moment longer and he didn't dare pull away. 

"You had better go check on that ferret," she said after some time, hesitantly pulling her hand away leaving the scorching sensation of her touch behind.

"Ferret?" Gabriel questioned, forgetting completely about the Johnsons.

She turned to leave, hesitating at the door. Looking back at him, she seemed to be weighing a decision. She turned to leave again, only to stop in her tracks. He saw her head drop slightly and could hear her say something so low that it may even be confused with the air conditioner or one of the machines humming in the other rooms.

"Did you say something?" Gabriel asked, listening slightly harder in case she didn't speak any louder.

She hesitated again before answering simply, "Call me."

She ran out of the door before he was able to respond. After a second, he slumped back against the examination table. He jumped slightly as he felt something cold and wet nuzzling his ear. Suddenly, the door opened again.

"I forgot Buster..." she replied, her face a whole new shade of pink. "Call me," she said again running away with Buster in her arms.

He stared at the door for a long time after she left almost unable to believe that that had just happened.

"She wants me to call her?" he asked himself. "Seriously? Wait do I have her number?"

He flipped frantically through the pages of the dog's chart, desperately searching for her number. Relief washed over him as he found the seven digits he was searching for.

He could finally talk to the living embodiment of all of his recent dreams and fantasies. It may even be possible for him to start a relationship with her. Letting his head fall against the door, he let out a heavy sigh.

"Now I just need to convince myself to go through with it," he said to himself as he picked up the chart and walked to his office.

Chapter Text

"I'm going to call her," Gabriel said as he paced in front of Cyril and Melanie.

"Good for you mate," Cyril commented without looking up.

"You should like totally go for it!" Melanie added.

Melanie had come to Cyril to get an expert's opinion for her latest article featuring clothes that were both fashionable as well as functional when hiking, fishing, rock-climbing, etc. They were sitting on his couch looking through multiple pictures of different articles of clothing and footwear when Gabriel barged in and began telling Cyril about his conversation he had with Kasey a few days prior to this.

He rambled on for several minutes until he noticed Melanie and immediately stopped talking. He had met her a few times when she was with Cyril but she was still practically a stranger to him. After some coaxing, however, they had gotten to the point they were at.

“Okay…” he said more determinedly, “I’m going to call her!”

He left the room carrying his phone, staring at the numbers that were taunting him on the screen.

"I can't call her!" he whined bursting back into the living room.

"Why the bloody hell not?" Cyril asked irritably. 

"What do I say?! She'll think I'm boring and a loser and I will lose any chance I have with her!"

"And she would be right mate," Cyril commented placing his hands behind his head.

Melanie elbowed him garnering a grunt of irritation from Cyril. He turned to her and glowered.

"Like, don't talk to your friend like that!"

"He bloody well knows I'm kidding."

"Yeah," Melanie retorted rolling her eyes and motioning at Gabriel. "He like, totally, looks like he got the joke."

There he was staring intently at his feet, shuffling them back and forth nervously.

Melanie stood from her place on the couch and walked over to him, lowering her head so she could look at him.

"Look Gabriel, like I don't know much about you but you totally seem to be a total sweetheart and, like, any girl would love to have you," she smiled at him as he peaked up at her shyly.

"Thanks...I just hope Kasey feels that way..."

"Kasey?" Melanie asked, her dark blue eyes darting between Cyril and Gabriel. "Like, Kasey who?"

"I honestly don't know. She told me Kasey and I was so thrilled that I didn't even think to ask her."

"Just a sec..." she said pulling her cellphone from her pocket. 

She stood for a moment saying nothing. Holding her phone in one hand and twirling her bright pink hair with the other, she scrolled through numerous pictures. Finally, she came to the one she was looking for and reached her phone out to Gabriel. 

"Like, is that her?"

Gabriel examined the picture closely. Sure enough, there, with her face pressed against Melanie's, was the object of his desires. 

"By Jove, I think you've bloody well got it Melanie love. Why the lad's all but got cartoon hearts above his head."

Gabriel glared at Cyril before turning his attention back to Melanie.

"Yes, that's Kasey," he confirmed. "How do you know her?"

"Like, she's totally my roomie slash bestie! Cyril knows her too."

Cyril thought for a second before realization hit him, "Mate, you have a thing for Kasey Davenport? Ezra Davenport's daughter?"

Gabriel's face suddenly turned three shades paler, "The publishing mogul?"

Melanie looked at Gabriel completely confused, "Like, what's your problem?"

"I can't date Kasey Davenport!" he exclaimed. "She was already too good for me and now she's rich too?!"

Melanie and Cyril looked at each other and then back to him.

"Gabriel sweetie, Kasey is totally the best and she was like, super excited about the hottie vet. You, like, need to give her the chance to decide if you are totally good enough for her."

"Besides, she's bloody well SKINT now," Cyril pointed out. 

"English Cyril," Gabriel replied.

"That bloody well was English but I’ll dumb it down for you Yanks. She's stony-broke mate," Cyril answered, rolling his eyes.

"Wait, I'm confused," Gabriel said, looking between the two of them.

Melanie glared at Cyril, elbowing him again.

"What?! He's going to bloody well find out eventually. Better now than when he's shagging her."

This was met by glares from both parties.

"What?!" he exclaimed with wide innocent eyes.

Melanie turned back to Gabriel, "I, like, can't really give any details and neither can Cyril," she shot another look at him. "However, Kasey is totally great and she is like, totally worth a chance." 

Gabriel sighed, "I know she's worth it. I just don't know if I am."

Melanie released a breath of frustration, "Like, hang on a second."

She fiddled around with her phone for a second before putting it up to her ear.

"What are you doing?" Gabriel asked staring at Melanie suspiciously.

"We're, like, going to find out whether Kasey thinks you're worth it or not."

Gabriel looked at her completely confused before finally realizing what she was doing.

"No!" he commanded.

"Too late, it's totally ringing."

He reached for the phone in vain. Melanie dodged him and ran to the other side of the room. He could barely hear a female voice picking up the phone and stopped. 

"Hey Kasey! It's Melanie! Like, what are you doing ATM?"

She was quiet for a second before replying, "Awesome! So you remember Cyril right? Well I was at his apartment and it, like, turns out that his bestie is totes adorbs and is totally wanting to see you!" she was quiet for some time before finally speaking again. 

"Oh, I totally forgot about you being into someone else." She looked over at Gabriel with a sly grin. "Well that, like totally sucks! I'll tell Gabriel that you're not..." she was quiet again. "Hang on and I'll ask."

She looked up at Gabriel, "Like, what's your last name lover boy?"

"Yazzie..." he answered hesitantly.

"Yazzie," she said into the phone. "Yeah totally! You should come over! No, Cyril doesn't mind. Do you Cyril?" 

"As long as they don't go buffin' about my flat," he replied, leaning his head onto the back of the couch.

Melanie scowled at him, quickly changing her expression to one of exuberance, "Awesome! I'll text you the address!"

She turned her attention back to Gabriel, "Told ya! She's, like, totally into you!"

Gabriel blushed brightly, unable to say anything in return. He stared at his hands for a long time in complete silence. Suddenly, the weight of the situation hit him and he started to panic.

"Wait! She's coming here?!" he cried causing Cyril and Melanie to jump slightly.

"Yeah," Melanie answered, cocking her head slightly.

"She can't come here tonight!" 

"Why the bloody hell not?" Cyril questioned clearly perturbed.

"Because she just can't!" he cried.

"Oh my goddess! What the hell is wrong with you?!" Melanie yelled. "You like have a totally wonderful girl who wants to be yours and she's a total hottie!"

"I know that!" he yelled in return.

"Then, like, what's the problem? You know you totally want to be with her!"

"Bloody well wanks off anytime he thinks about her..." Cyril commented dryly.

Gabriel turned, glowering at him.

"Well you do," Cyril shot back.

"Anyway!" Melanie shouted. "She's on her way and she will totally be here in like 15 minutes. Stop being so totally nervous. If she didn't want to see you, she like, wouldn't be coming."

Gabriel took a deep breath and let it out slowly, "What if she doesn't like me?"

"Has she met you?" Cyril asked.

Gabriel looked at him with one eyebrow raised, "Well yeah?"

"And you were your usual charmingly befuddled self?

He shrugged and replied, "I guess?"

"And she is still coming to see you so stop being barmy."

Gabriel frowned at Cyril knowing that his friend was right. He knew there was no reason for him to be nervous. From the conversation that they had and the way she cared for Buster, he knew that Kasey really was a wonderful person. So what if she was one of the most beautiful women he had ever laid eyes on.

"There's no reason to be nervous," he repeated to himself.

Repeating this to himself like a mantra, Cyril and Melanie returned to their work. He began pacing around the room.

"I'm not nervous," he said internally. 

There was a sudden tapping on the door, making Gabriel freeze in his tracks.

"I'm terrified," he thought as Cyril went to answer the door.

Chapter Text

Kasey stood outside of Cyril's door tugging nervously at the hem of the too short blue dress Melanie had suggested she wear. It felt strange coming to Cyril’s apartment. They had met a few times before but they didn’t really know each other. He was usually Melanie’s plus one to most of the office parties and had become a common consultant for some of the wildlife magazines that her father’s company published but he was still basically a stranger to her.

Cyril opened the door very slightly, his eyes widening when he saw her.

"Hey Cyril," she greeted.

"Ello Kasey love, do come in," he returned, stepping back from the door to let her pass.

Kasey breezed through the door barely catching a, "Lucky git..." under Cyril's breath.

Kasey greeted Melanie briefly and made her way over to Gabriel.

"Hi," she greeted simply.

"HI!" he returned. "It's nice t...you look absolu...BATHROOM!"

"What the hell is wrong with you?!" he reprimanded himself seeing the confused, somewhat hurt look on Kasey's face.

"Don't go wankin' off in my lou!" Cyril called behind him.

Gabriel stiffened at the insinuation. Good ol’ Cyril always did know how to embarrass the hell out of him. Upon entering the bathroom, he slammed the door behind him. He punched the wall, his head following suit.

"Idiot!" he berated. "She's right there, in the flesh! Obviously she's as into you as you are her! What the hell is your problem?!" Suddenly a soft knock sounded on the door, pulling him from his self-hatred.

"Gabriel?" he could hear Kasey say quietly.

He was silent, unable to say anything in return.

"I'm sorry for coming here and putting you on the spot like that. I should have just taken the hint when you didn't call me," he could hear her sigh heavily through the door. "I'm going to go, okay? I'll even find Buster a new vet," she was quiet for a moment. "I'm sorry," she said again.

"You're about to lose her dumbass!"

"Wait!" he could hear himself say as if on auto pilot.

He wrenched the door open, coming face to face with her. Kasey's large brown eyes stared up at him wet with tears threatening to fall. He reached out to her, his fingers shaking madly.

"Please don't go..." he said quietly, grabbing her hand.

Kasey stared up at him not saying anything.

"I'm not good with people...especially girls...as embarrassing as that is for a grown man to admit," he paused, choosing his words carefully. "I can't stop thinking about you and I don't want to lose any chance with you because of my weird social phobia."

He grew quiet and sighed heavily, looking down at his feet. Kasey stood there for a moment taking in everything that he had said to her not exactly sure how to reply. He squeezed her hand slightly before letting it slip from his grasp.

"Sorry," he said, shuffling his feet nervously. "Anyway, I completely understand if you want nothing to do with me but..."

His final words seemed to die in his throat. The sensation of Kasey's hand touching his cheek stalled his words. He looked deeply into her eyes letting them warm him and ease the tension he felt. Letting out a soft sigh, he leaned into her touch.

"You don't need to worry with me," she said with a soft smile. "I am willing to be patient with you if you're willing to do the same for me."

He smiled back at her, raising his hand slowly to stroke the back of hers. She rolled her lip between her teeth as if weighing an unspoken decision. Gabriel's eyes shifted slightly, entranced by the simple action, his heart hammering in his ears.

"Goddess that's sexy," he thought to himself.

She smiled, seemingly laughing at herself and shook her head slightly.

"What's so funny?" he asked her.

"It's kind of stupid," she replied quietly and blushed.

"Go on," he encouraged.

"Well... I was kind of, sort of thinking about kissing you..."

She blushed an even brighter shade of red, her cheeks feeling as though they had been engulfed in flames.

"I wouldn't object to it..." he replied softly.

"Really?" she asked, cocking her brow.

"Yeah..." he answered.

"You're not going to lock yourself in the bathroom again are you?" she questioned with a grin.

"Maybe if I could take you with me," he thought to himself.

He blushed slightly at his thought, deciding to just shake his head in response.

"You won't have some kind of weird spastic reaction like Jerry Lewis or something right?”

"Jerry Lewis?" he laughed.

“He was the best example I could come up with,” she defended, her hands on her hips.

She didn’t understand what was happening here. Was she really so willing to rush into a relationship with this guy? He really was a great guy and was definitely great to look at. The truth of the matter is that she hadn’t considered Bobby a boyfriend in a long time so he wouldn’t really be considered a rebound guy, right?

They looked deeply into each other’s eyes, neither of them saying anything. Kasey released a soft breath of anticipation. He leaned forward touching his lips to hers gently, stroking her cheek softly with his fingertips. She sighed into the kiss her mind swimming.

“Rebound or not, I really want to see where this goes,” she thought, letting her eyes flutter close.

They separated, far too soon for either of them. Her legs suddenly felt very shaky causing her to lean against him for support.

“Is this where I say something along the lines of ‘Oh nice lady’ or something like that?” Gabriel asked, tilting his head to look at her.

Kasey giggled, “No, you don’t have to say anything.”

Gabriel smiled at her, continuing to hold her close not wanting to let go. She sighed happily against him, her arms wrapped tightly around his waist. Looking up at him, she grazed his lips slightly with hers, delving slightly deeper this time wanting more of the sensation that had passed through her before.

“Oi! You two stop snogging about my flat!” Cyril’s voice interrupted.

They jumped back from each other, both of them blushing vividly.

“You two are like, so totally cute!” Melanie called around Cyril.

Gabriel laughed nervously, ruffling the back of his hair.

“So Gabriel, are you, like, going to call my friend this time?” Melanie asked, her arms crossed over her chest.

Gabriel nodded fervently before stopping to look at Kasey. He smiled at her adoringly and reached to grab her hand, squeezing it tenderly.

“I think I can manage to now…”

Kasey smiled reassuringly at Gabriel trying to convey that she had meant what she said. She had waited this long to find something that would make her feel even remotely happy and Gabriel seemed to do just that.

“I don’t know how long this will last,” she thought sadly to herself, “but I really do want to see how far it will go and to hold on to this for as long as I can.”

Gabriel leaned in, giving her lips another soft kiss. She sighed a strange mixture of content and sadness in response.

“He’ll eventually realize that he’s too good for me.”

Chapter Text

Gabriel's eyes fluttered open as a streak of bright morning light shined through a crack in his drawn curtains. It was early on the Saturday following the events with Kasey and he still had a hard time believing it was real. He raised up in his bed , stretching. Checking the time on his phone provided confirmation that what happened had indeed happened.

There, on his phone was a text from Kasey, "Hey Jerry, last night was fun. I can’t wait to see you today."

He smiled warmly at the text, sending her back a quick reply, “Same here, nice lady,” before exiting his room to start his day.

After they had left Cyril's, he decided to call her, if only to prove to himself and to her that he was capable of doing so. They talked for several hours and discovered they had quite a bit more in common than what they had discussed in his office.

They had decided to grab something to eat after she got off work. Early in their conversation, Kasey had mentioned that there was a hill overlooking the farm where she worked. She had said there was a strange tree on top of the hill that was kind of a greenish blue color and she would often sit under the tree and relax before going home. That was when Gabriel had made the suggestion of having a picnic together and she had agreed.

 

XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

"Hey Kasey," Gabriel greeted his reflection. "Hello Kasey," he greeted, letting his voice drop an octave. "Hola! Kasey," he said with a slight, fake accent, "You look muy bonita y muy, muy caliente today," he concluded in a whisper, waggling his eyebrows.

"What are you doing?"

Gabriel jumped slightly at the voice that suddenly sounded behind him. He whirled around, finding his brother standing there leaning against the door frame.

"Goddess, don't you knock?" Gabriel snapped.

Michael looked around the family's bathroom and back to his brother.

"You're standing here in the bathroom with the door standing wide open. You want knocking, you close doors," he commented, wrapping his arms across his chest.

Gabriel sighed, knowing that Mikey was right. He looked at his brother and shrugged, not really sure how to answer his question.

"I'm...practicing," he answered, not making eye contact with him.

Michael looked at him with one eyebrow raised, "Practicing saying hi to yourself?"

Gabriel sighed and began to ramble, "I met a girl...An incredibly beautiful girl who I felt this instant connection to and have thought about ever since. She is also sweet as can be and quite sexy."

"Is that why you've been spending so much time alone in your bedroom?"

Gabriel glowered at his younger brother, "Anyway, Cyril's friend Melanie knows this girl and called her while I was at Cyril's place, told her I was interested in her, and told her to come over. So I locked myself in the bathroom and she was upset, thinking that I don't like her but I do and I kissed her and and for reasons unbeknownst to me, she's interested in me too. Now I don't know what to do."

They stood there in complete silence for some time, Michael's eyes wide with all the information that had been thrust upon him. He stared at his older brother, kind of questioning whether he was being serious or not.

"Do you have a date with this girl?"

"Well...yeah..." Gabriel said, shuffling his feet, "I'm supposed to bring us some food for when she gets off work."

"Then go on the date and stop talking to your reflection psycho."

"Why does everyone act like it's so easy?" he sighed, talking more to himself than Michael.

"Because most people don't spaz when another human looks their way," Michael commented.

"Were you needing something in particular?" Gabriel asked scowling at the younger Yazzie brother.

"Not really," he replied with a shrug. "I just heard you talking and wondered whether you were actually talking to someone or if you had finally taken that final leap into isolated insanity."

"Well, I haven't so you can leave now," Gabriel replied, shoving his brother out of the bathroom and slamming the door.

"That's yet to be decided!" Michael called back at him. “And if you’re going to jerk off before going, don’t ‘There’s Something About Mary,’ it!”

“I was going to do it in the shower…Goddess! Would you just go away?!”

“That’s gross man!” Michael yelled.

“Well go somewhere and stop picturing it then!”

“Fine but at least rinse it out when you’re done!” Micheal replied before walking off.

Gabriel turned on the water, testing it a few times before stepping inside. He sighed as he let the water wash over him. His mind started wandering, filling every inch of his thoughts with Kasey. She was truly the most beautiful woman that he had ever seen and he was glad to have the opportunity to get to know her better.

His thoughts always started innocently enough with them talking about some random interest they both shared. Then she would lean over, pressing her beautiful body against him. She would then kiss him in a way that made sparks erupt throughout his body, much like they did the first few times they had kissed. This kiss would be different though, more needy, more desperate, more hungry for something other than a simple and innocent kiss.

This was always his undoing. He would feel himself growing harder with each passing thought, his mind running wild with the images of her. It’s not that he ever really planned to do anything like this but it seemed to happen a lot lately. As a matter of fact, the thought originally began as a way to tease Mikey and get him to leave him alone.

He sighed as he gripped himself firmly and began stroking gently. His mind’s eye began tracing every subtle curve of the beautiful woman below him. Her long legs wrapped around his waist as he imagined what it would feel like for his hand to be her instead. He pictured her moaning his name as he plunged deeper inside of her.

“Kasey,” he moaned as he felt himself drawing closer.

His beautiful image gave a cry of ecstasy as she tightened around him, arching herself fully against him. He gripped himself tighter, stroking harder in response to his daydream. Groaning in appreciation, he felt himself coming undone.

He stood there for a moment, looking up at the water in a daze. His senses quickly returned to him and he quickly finished his shower, rinsing it out as per Mikey’s request. He dried himself quickly and stepped onto the plush bath mat.

Looking at himself in the mirror, he couldn’t help but feel somewhat guilty. He knew that it was natural to fantasize about someone that you’re attracted to, especially when that person was as attractive as Kasey. Though he knew this was true, he had thoughts and visions that were more sexual in nature a lot and wasn’t sure if that was okay or not.

He had started out telling himself that he wasn’t merely feeling lust for Kasey but now he wasn’t quite sure. She was a wonderful girl and was definitely one of the sweetest people that he had ever met but he still wasn’t sure if his feelings were more sexual in nature or what?

He sighed at his reflection and shrugged, “Why am I questioning this? I couldn’t just have some kind of fling…I can barely even talk to her…I don’t even think I’d be capable of a strictly physical relationship…Then again…I didn’t think I’d be capable of any kind of relationship with her.”

His mind suddenly shifted to the warm brown eyes that seemed to peer into him and that beautiful smile that melted his heart. He thought about their rather unusual nicknames for each other and grinned. Turning toward the door, he took one last look at himself.

“Yeah, you’ve got it bad,” he told himself before going to his room to get ready for his date.