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Kippers and Whistles

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"A gentleman would offer to sleep on the floor," she said.

"A gentleman would not point out that your hair smells like ham, and that the ham-smell is - just keeping you informed, dear - quite overhwleming."

So because Wesley's parents hadn't been there for the wedding (well, no one had been there for the wedding, except Jenna, literally the only person Liz knew who could be counted on not to say anything the slightest bit sane or reasonable, even by accident, about why she might not want to go through with marrying her settling-soulmate, because honestly it wouldn't have taken much to make her chicken right the hell out of there. Thank god for Jenna, the perfect witness. The only thing she said before the very short ceremony was: "You are absolutely doing the right thing, Liz, crazy spontaneous weddings to some guy your friends and family have barely met never go out of style, and I'm almost certain they always work out really well, especially for whichever person has less money and didn't sign a prenup." Jenna also brought some weird Japanese liquor as a wedding gift, and only drank half of it herself. Bonus all round.)

Anyway, because they hadn't been there for the wedding, Wesley's parents offered to fly them both out to London so they could meet their son's new wife.

And Liz was like, free trip to England? Allrightythen. She did, coincidentally, want to go to there. Plus it wasn't like being married to Wesley could be any more annoying in another country than it was in America.

Wrong, Liz Lemon. Oh, so ungodly wrong.

It was the worst. Everything was the worst here. From the food, to the travelling, the awkward meeting with her in-laws, to having in-laws now, to the food, and also?

There was this.

"You're breathing on my neck," she hissed at him.

Sharing a bed was never part of the deal. It was never in the deal.

"There's nowhere else for me to breathe," he replied testily.

She lay on her back, covers clutched up to her chin, and his face was just waaaay too close to hers on the pillow. Way too close. It wasn't even a proper, adult bed, it was a twin, maybe even smaller than a regular twin bed. It was like a small child's bed, and maybe it had even been Wesley's bed when he was a kid, but she wasn't even going to consider that because it was disgusting.

The point is: for better or worse, in sickness and in health, yeah, and then nothing about sleeping squished together in the same two-foot-wide space. Nothing. Dealbreaker. The mother of all dealbreakers.

"Roll over. Roll over. Roll over. God."

With a huff of irritation, he rolled over and faced the wall, his butt now pressing up against her. "How are you not aware that your hair smells like that? When did you even eat ham, may I ask? We've been in each other's company for at least eighteen hours now; I've had a delightful front row seat to everything you've eaten. And you've just bathed. Please tell me how this is at all possible?"

"They weren't consecutive eighteen hours, okay, because you use the bathroom like every thirty minutes, and what is that about? Are you ill? In some way I should but don't want to know about?"

"Not a jot. But you know what they say, quick for a pee, late for a -"

"No! Don't finish it. No one says it. I don't even need to hear it to know that."

And the thing is, she never would have agreed to sleep in here, ever, except there was literally no where else in the house to sleep; the sofas were all tiny two-seat 'settees', made for tiny British people, one of which Liz Lemon was not. She even checked the bathtub, but again: tiny. And she was so exhausted, doing this was an option somehow. It was basically this or sit on the shower floor and cry.

"Why are your elbows so sharp?"

She rolled over on her side facing away from him, and elbowed him again, on purpose (so basically like all the other times she elbowed him on purpose in the last ten minutes). "Why do you need so much of the covers? What are you covering up back there?"

He sniffed. "Your feet are very cold and they are, I will point out, touching me."

"Well, your legs are all warm and clammy, it's no picnic for me, either."

"Then stop putting those giant icy-poles you call your feet directly on them."

"Bite me."

He tried to angle his legs away from her, and she rounded on him. "Dude, come on, stop moving around so much, your parents will think we're... doing junk."

There was a brief, annoying sporfle in the dark. "Never mind, poppet, just go down for breakfast in the morning in those things you call sleeptogs."

"I don't. I don't call them that. No one calls them that."

"Fine, pyjamas. One look at your 'pyjamas', and no one would believe any sort of flimmery-scullery went on tonight."

"Well then, mission accomplished. Least sexy pyjamas ever? Booyah. Because no one needs to be going and getting any sort of ideas, okay? And that is the only reason I purchased and am now wearing them, and not because my Great Aunt Sophie buys the same kind and we both think they're awesome and that the extra roomy seat is both convenient and comfortable."

"Good lord. My apologies for bringing it up."

"Ugh."

The worst.

Except here's the thing. They sort of almost did it one time.

See, they got married. And then they got bombed. Totally, utterly bombed. And what with all the alcohol and resentment, the soul-crushing finality of it all - add a dash of giddy, holy-shit-married-what to the mix and boning seemed like the only sensible thing to do.

But they only actually got about half the necessary amount of clothes off before Wesley bit her lip (accidentally, he insisted, but Liz suspected that was just how he kissed, bleurgh) and when she pushed him away, swearing in pain, he tripped backwards over the coffee table and bruised something, she didn't even know what, or care, and the entire endeavour ended there. With the two of them drunkenly cursing each other's existence before getting tired and going to bed. In different rooms. On different floors of her (now officially their) duplex apartment.

And since then they both were just doing their best to forget he'd seen her in her bra. And that for about five seconds there she'd had her hand in his pants.

"Look, I'm going to sleep."

"As am I."

Well, good then.

And after they both shifted around trying again to get comfortable for another three minutes, they both utterly failed to do just that.

Then Wesley said, "We could always fork."

She took a very deep breath. "What?!"

"You know, fork."

She paused. No, he was still saying it. "What? What the what? I mean, what?"

"Fork. We might fit better, that's all. I'll be the big fork, you be the little fork."

"Oh for... how am I supposed to talk to someone who can't pronounce the letter 'R'. It's 'foRk', you British idiot. And that's not even the right -"

"Just whose language are we speaking right now, may I remind you? Would it be English, by any chance?"

"Shut your stupid, English face."

"Yes, but first, shall we fork?"

"Ugh, fine."

It was actually less cramped. He was only sort of touching her a lot, and she could still press her toes against his skinny, hairy, yet irresistibly warm shins. He was breathing on her neck again, but she wasn't going to start that again. They would be going in circles of squashy uncomfortableness all night.

"Fuck," he said.

"Huh?"

"You thought I said 'fuck'. We could always fuck." He chortled a little. "Oh yes, that sounds like me. Let's do have a fuck, oh baby."

"Stop. Stop saying it. Any of it."

"Really. If I was going to proposition you -"

"Please do not proposition me."

"Quite, but if I were to proposition you, it would not be with the words 'should we, you know, fork'."

"Great. That's great to know."

She didn't even know why there were talking about this. It was weird. And gross. Super, absurdly gross. God, she was so tired.

Wesley seemed to get this, too, finally, (the weirdness, that is) because he stopped saying things. And then, finally, it was quiet.

For like forty seconds.

"It's been rather a long while since I last... forked anyone."

Oh boy.

"What?"

"Making conversation."

"No, you're not, you're - are you propositioning me? Dude."

"We could have another go. It was such an ungodly disaster last time, thanks in no small part to your perfectly charming clumsiness, dear. Well, but you know what they say, it's all kippers and whistles from here."

She didn't even have the wherewithal to shoot that one down.

Instead, she said, "Is that your hand on my waist?"

There was a sigh, which fluffed up her hair behind her neck. "Not if you don't want it there," he said.

He sounded really tired, too. Why did she kind of like that, all of a sudden?

"I rather like the smell of ham, actually. Reminds me of sandwiches. Who doesn't enjoy a nice sandwich?"

And then he had to go and say that.

She turned over to face him. "Okay, here's the deal. Just don't... speak. Okay?" He didn't reply, which was perfect. "And for the love of ham, don't bite me."

"I should warn you, if you touch any part of me with your horrendously long toenails, I will scream," he countered

"Good to know. Let's do this."

And then they kissed.

And after that, about twenty minutes later once they'd managed to get her pyjamas off, everything wasn't the worst.