[identity profile] mollivanders.livejournal.com posting in [community profile] prefer_my_life
Title: I have made a ruckus (and I made it for you)
Fandom: Skins
Rating: PG-13
Characters: Cook/Effy
Author's Note: For [livejournal.com profile] stainofmylove as a very very belated birthday gift. You get nothing but my best <3 Word Count - 1,158. Spoilers through S3. Title from Chris Garneau's The Leaving Song
Disclaimer: I own nothing.

After she's chosen Freddie, after everyone else has left her, there's still Cook. There will always be Cook.

(He shows up at her place with bloody hands and torn clothes, and she lets him in without question.)

“Freds is dead,” he says, brushing past her to the bathroom and Effy leans against the railing, watching him from three steps below.

(There’s a rushing in her ears and she wants to fall but a scared voice in her mind tells her there’s nobody left to catch her.)

The shadow above her begs to differ.

“What now, Cook?” she asks, aims for diffidence but her voice cracks (he looks back at her, the blood mixing with water in the sink as it drains).

She knows the police will find the blood, knows Cook’s done something awful, and takes a step closer to him.

(After all, so has she.)

“He’s dead, Effy,” Cook says, stopping the water and leaning over the railing to look at her better. He’s serious, looking at her intently, and she wants to escape in her mind, let him look through her for all the good it will do him. With the lights off, his face is washed in shadow, the bathroom window barely giving off light with the setting sun). “I found him, at Foster’s.”

Does he think she’ll break?

“What did you do, Cook?” she asks, finally makes the last two steps up to him, reaches for his arm to see. His shirt, pushed up to his elbows, is torn and wet where there was blood, but his knuckles are torn and there’s a look on his face she’s seen before – just not on his.

(This time, she knows, it wasn’t an accident and hospitals won’t help.)

“What I had to,” he says, and if it were anyone else, Effy thinks he’d be out the door by now but she suspects (she hates knowing) it’s her that holds him here. “Now Foster’s dead too.”

“Maybe he’s not dead,” she says, and they both know who she means, now that her breath’s coming shallow, and Cook won’t take his eyes off her. “Maybe Foster just –”

(Maybe this never happened.)

“I need to get out of here, Eff,” Cook says quietly next to her in the dark, and he’s not asking, but Effy understands.

“I’ll get the keys,” she says. He presses a soft kiss on her lips before she pulls away, and it scares her more than anything else he’s done.

(There’s a bag under her bed, safe from her mother’s cleaning and prying eyes, that Effy kept from before. Dark clothes and her favorite jeans, in case she ever lost her mind again.

If she ever found the only lost space that made sense, again.)

Cook doesn’t ask any questions when she pulls the bag out, just waits for her cue, and for a moment Effy thinks maybe this isn’t real. It’s too much like every dream she’s ever had, filled with shadows and Cook waiting for her.

But outside, a flashing light catches her eyes, and Cook startles, waking Effy up. “Your face,” she says brushing it with her fingers as if she doesn’t really care. “It’s going to be all over the telly soon anyway, might as well clean it up.”

He points out a beat-up looking car when they’re two towns away and Effy pulls over without a word, leaves her mum’s keys under the seat.

(They’re not coming back, this time.)

“Why’re you doing this?” he asks, face hidden as he hotwires the car. Effy glances at him, then back at the road.

“I owe you one,” she says, and her voice is steady with the lie.

“Where are we going then, princess?” he asks and Effy cracks a smile like she hasn’t smiled in a year, faces him dead-on and quirks an eyebrow. “Anywhere the wind blows, Cook,” she says and he revs the engine (takes her hand).

He was always the one living in a fairytale.

It was nearly summer when they started, and when Effy doesn’t think past each day. “Further south,” she tells Cook. “I want to see the sun.”

“All the way to Arabia,” he jokes, and Effy shrugs, lights a cigarette, feels Cook’s eyes on her. “They might recognize you there,” she points out and Cook laughs darkly so she slides a hand between his legs until he’s not laughing anymore.

(It’s familiar, it’s easy, and she thinks nobody at home would recognize her now. Only Cook.)

“We could be outlaws there,” he says tightly, facing the road but eyes blank as her hand moves slowly. “Join a revolution.”

“No, Cook,” she says, and pulls back (he looks at her, sour, and she laughs). “I’ll marry a prince and you’ll be my court jester.”

“You’d just run away with me again,” he says smartly and Effy pulls back to the window, stares at the road behind them.

(Nothing else so true.)

A month goes by before Effy wonders where Panda is, what her mum’s doing. Cook doesn’t have a mum to look after him the way hers did, washing her hair and putting her to bed. He never asks if she’s heard, if she’s called. She supposes he knows her better now, lets him chase her down the cobblestoned streets of small Italian towns and into the darkest parts they always seem to find too easily.

Effy puts Cook to bed, falls on top of the sheets next to him and watches him sleep.

If only Freddie could see her now.

(The days run together like rays from the sun, blinding her. She feels blind, reaches for them and finds Cook instead. Still, she stays.)

The beach is warm and Effy leans back on the shore, lets her hair play with the sand while Cook runs around in the shallows like a child. He kicks at the waves and calls to her, but for now, Effy leans back to stare at the sun.

(The whole world’s falling apart; they just got a head start on everyone else.)

“Where to next, love?” he asks suddenly, leaning over her, but his shadow’s cast behind him, toward the shore. Effy follows its line down to the waves, sparkling blue and precious and filled with danger, adventure, and riches.

“We’re never going back, are we?” she asks, as though the question hasn’t been answered by every mile put between them and the streets they used to know. Shades her eyes as Cook leans over her, a grin and a grimace torn on his face.

“Don’t think so, no,” he says (pulls back, like she’s going to leave him now).

“Then stay, Cook,” she says, and pulls him down next to her, his hair dripping in her eyes, and kisses him until they’ve made a valley in the sand. “Just for now.”

“Stay,” he breathes, and flops down next to her with a grunt.

(By nightfall they're running again.)

Finis

Date: 2011-12-08 03:26 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] ever-neutral.livejournal.com
This is so desperately sad, but in the BEST way, somehow really lovely too.

He was always the one living in a fairytale.

OOOH. Yes. Great line.

Date: 2011-12-09 05:39 pm (UTC)
ext_317107: (Skins; Cook/Effy; fuckin world knows us)
From: [identity profile] stainofmylove.livejournal.com
Yayayayay! FIC FROM YOU COOK/EFFY FIC *FLAILS*

Anyway. Related. THIS IS AWESOME. It really hits hard, but in subtle and strange ways. Starting with

(Maybe this never happened.)

Seriously, this is right in the beginning and I already was like ~MY EMOTIONS. OH GOD. Just, you really capture where Effy is at so succinctly and so sharply and then that parenthetical happens and I just wanna die.

“I’ll get the keys,” she says. He presses a soft kiss on her lips before she pulls away, and it scares her more than anything else he’s done.

KIDS. This is so fucking great, I can't. I really love your take on Effy in this relationship, how seldomly she ever totally admits to much less expresses the truth--and yet how much honesty is still just all over the place, all over and between the both of them. The prince vs. court jester thing and its resolution was just so pitch perfect for me. And then her being a bit of a caretaker in the relationship and wishing Freddie could see her like that I CAN'T. I love this, thank you so much.

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