Upon The Morning of February 13, 2011 ...
"Five years!" Kelly trills into his ear.
"Mrfhghhgphhhhh," says Ryan, who's mostly still asleep.
"Oh my God, can you believe it, baby?" Kelly's really good at kissing and talking at the same time. She didn't used to be, but over the years she's evolved, and not for the better. Like a cylon. Or the musical stylings of Iron & Wine. (Personally, Ryan thinks it's a real travesty that the guy couldn't just content himself with the simple truth of an acoustic guitar and a plaintively haunting vocal, but once you've gone Twilight soundtrack, well. There's no resurrecting your indie cred.) "Five --" kiss! "--whole--" kiss! "--years!" Kissssssssss. There are worse ways to wake up.
"It's not really five years," Ryan says when Kelly finally has to pull away and breathe. He has this theory that you could push her into a large body of water and she could easily hold her breath for like two minutes. Not that he's ever tempted to try this. Just, scientific curiosity. He's got it. You could probably call him a bit of a Renaissance Man.
Kelly goes from giddy to scary-serious in .5 seconds. He should be used to this by now. But there's no preparing yourself for that kind of horror.
"What?" she says sharply.
"It's not really five years. Don't make your mad face, Kelly, it's just facts. I mean, think about it. We were together for like a year, then you decided to date Darryl."
"Um, yeah, because you left me for New York, Douche Monster!"
"--and then fate brought us back together again. And then fate decided I should go to Thailand."
"You can stop saying that, loser; I know you just went to Fort Lauderdale."
"I never told you that."
"I have ways, Ryan. I know things."
He does not find that hard to believe, like, at all. He probably shouldn't spend so much time with such a psychopath. But the constant element of danger? Kind of a turn-on. He's not gonna lie.
"And then," he finishes, because he thinks this sounds pretty good, "fate thought that we should, ya know, give this thing another shot. For awhile. For however long. No pressure. No strings. Just two people, having a good time with no real expectation of anything in retu--"
But apparently Kelly's not in one of her listening moods. Probably because they don't exist.
"Okay, bitch, here's the deal: I'm going to break this down for you right now," she says. She's usually not this swaggery unless she's been listening to Beyonce. "I have spent the last five years putting up with the hot mess that is you, Ryan Howard, even when your hair was so disgusting I would have rather looked at pictures of dead kittens. Most girls would not have the incredible patience--" Desperation, Ryan fills in, "--and confidence--" Latent self-loathing, Ryan supplies, "-- and generosity--" Horniness, Ryan amends, and smirks to himself, "--to deal with you for more than a month. So guess what, moron? This is our five year anniversary whether you like it or not, and you better be nice to me, because I am the best thing that's ever happened to your whole sad little life, Ryan Bailey Assface Howard."
"I bought you a teddy bear," Ryan says.
Kelly narrows her eyes at him. "Liar."
Ryan reaches under the bed and pulls out a pink 'HAPPY ANNIBEARSARY' teddy bear. Please. It's been five years. He's got this shit down.
She squeals and cuddles it like it's the first-born child that he'll, if he's being honest, probably get stuck fathering someday.
"Oh my God, Ryan, it's incredible! This is totally going on my desk at work. I don't even care if I might have to move my computer. His name is Little Ryan. Or maybe Ryan Junior. Or maybe Justin Bieber Bear."
"Happy anniversary, psycho-bitch," Ryan murmurs into her hair, smiling a little, and kisses her temple.
"Screw you, jerkwad," Kelly says happily.