Snow was lightly falling outside the living room window. Beca was sitting on her mother's couch, catching her breath while her mother and various other relatives commiserated in the kitchen after their family supper. She was at her mother's home on the outskirts of Boston for the Christmas holidays from Barden, and while part of her was glad to have a break from school, part of her missed it. It didn't make sense, not really; she and her roommate Kimmy Jin hardly spoke, she certainly wasn't missing all of the exams and assignments, yet there she was, wishing she was going back.
There was a reason for that, and while she'd never admit it out loud to anyone she was pretty sure she knew what it was. Beca felt a strange sense of camaraderie with the a capella group she'd joined, the Barden Bellas, and she missed them. That was certainly not something she'd expected to happen, however despite it all, many of her fellow members had grown on her.
Laughter from the next room derailed her train of thought and brought her crashing back to reality. Sighing, Beca got to her feet and headed upstairs to her bedroom before her mother could come out and cajole her to rejoin the group. She could have spent the holidays with her father's family instead but in would've been six of one, half a dozen of the other, really. The more she thought about it the better off she would have been staying at school, although most of the students had left for home so she'd probably have felt just as alone there too.
She turned on her laptop and plopped down on the bed, putting her headphones on as soon as she did. If her mother called out to her she could feign ignorance due to the music drowning out her voice. To further the alibi, and to entertain herself, she turned on some music as well. With no specific plan she just opened her web browser and surfed around aimlessly, wondering how long she'd have to spend holed up in her bedroom.
Out of boredom, and curiosity, she surfed to Facebook to see if the Bellas actually had their own Facebook page. While Beca did in fact have a Facebook account, she used a different alias for it, and would never admit to anyone that she actually owned and used one. It was mainly for following different groups and interests after all, mainly with respect to her musical pursuits, and her pseudonym account didn't have many friends on there. It definitely didn't have any relatives either, as Beca couldn't imagine anything more horrifying than having an aunt or uncle - or worse, one of her parents - monitoring her online activities. A quick search brought up a basic page, which was apparently maintained by Aubrey, and which had a few dozen or so followers. Scanning the list of people, one named jumped out at her: Chloe's.
Beca clicked on Chloe's name and checked out her friend's profile. She had an absurdly high number of friends, which was no real surprise because who didn't love Chloe? Her picture was one from what Beca presumed was an earlier Bellas performance, perhaps from last year. The area labeled relationship status read 'It's complicated,' which elicited a chuckle from Beca as she thought back to that fateful day in the shower. Chloe hadn't exactly been alone on that occasion, as Beca had found out when the guy who'd been in the shower with Chloe entered her stall to find the red head. Her friend had dated several other people over the course of the semester too, which explained the status.
A glance at one of the recent pictures posted on Chloe's timeline brought something else to mind. The picture was one of Aubrey and Chloe, with Aubrey sitting in a chair and Chloe standing behind her with her arms wrapped around the other girl, both of them smiling widely at the person taking the picture. It raised a question Beca had asked herself several times since meeting the pair. What was their relationship, exactly? It was clear that they were both very close to one another, but sometimes it seemed to Beca that there was more to it than that. Aubrey never seemed to be dating anyone, male or female, and Chloe was interested in both men and women, so it could have been possible, Beca supposed. It wasn't something she could ever ask either of them, however, especially not Aubrey.
There wasn't anything wrong with them having a relationship if that were the case, it was just something that had puzzled Beca. She was too busy concentrating on her music to even think about a relationship herself, and she had no problems with same sex relationships either.
Glancing at the rest of Chloe's page, Beca was about to click away to another site when something else caught her eye. It was Chloe's address, which was apparently less than a ten minute drive away from Beca's mother's house. While they had become friends through the Bellas, they had never really discussed where they were from or where they'd be spending the holidays, so it was a surprise to discover Chloe was nearby.
Beca chewed her lip and thought about contacting the other girl. Wasn't there some kind of obligation - Aubrey's voice modified the word to aca-obligation in her head - on her part to reach out to Chloe and let her know she was in the area? Whether a capella etiquette actually dictated such a common courtesy was beyond her. Beca glanced at her cell phone, which lay next to her on the bed. She certainly couldn't contact Chloe via her fake Facebook account, and she did have the other girl's cell phone number - the Bellas insisted they all be able to text or call each other in case of an aca-mergency, once again in Aubrey'd words - but how would she explain finding out where Chloe was for the holidays? That also presumed that Chloe had returned to her hometown, of course; there was always the chance that she'd gone elsewhere, much like Amy had planned to do.
If Chloe was nearby, however, it would be a major bonus, giving Beca an out from spending every waking moment with her family. They could hang out over the break, getting her out of the house and away from her mother and relatives.
An idea popped into Beca's head. If she just texted Chloe and asked in general where she was and if she was free to talk, maybe her friend would offer that information voluntarily. If not, at the very least she might actually be free to talk and Beca could try to bring it up in conversation. It wasn't like she thought Chloe would be upset with her for creeping her on Facebook, but Beca didn't want to admit that she needed her, or anyone for that matter.
Scooping up her phone, Beca thought of how best to phrase her text message. Once she figured out what to say, she tapped on Chloe's name in her phone's address book and began to type,
Hey there, you around? Sorry to bother you at home, just had a quick question.
Beca read the message over once more before sending it. She didn't have to wait too long before there was a reply, her phone beeping and vibrating at the return message's arrival.
No bother, promise, just unpacking @ my folks' place. what's up?
She was relieved that Chloe didn't seem to mind being contacted, and also glad because it sounded like the other girl was in the area. Beca thought for a second and then texted her back right away.
k, good! Just dodging mom & other Boston relatives atm. Have you heard from Amy?
Beca had in fact heard from Amy since leaving school, via e-mail at least, as Amy had written her upon her arrival at some tropical destination with one of her many suitors. It was the only thing she could come up with to ask Chloe off the top of her head, however, so it would have to do. The reply came back almost as fast as the first one.
OMG are u in Boston?! me too, close by! Amy mailed & is doing ok. We should talk! Calling u now!
Just as soon as Beca finished reading the text her phone began to ring. A wave of panic hit her before she calmed herself down and answered the phone. Chloe had offered to call her, after all, and she was none the wiser about her Facebook creeping, so it'd be ok.
"Beca! Hi!" Chloe's voice rang out. "Where are you? I didn't know you were going to be staying around here over the holidays!"
"Yeah, no, my mother lives out here, and I spent more time with my father during the semester so I figured I'd come back here for Christmas. Plus there's no step-monster out here, so." Beca shrugged even though she knew the other girl couldn't see it. "I didn't know you'd be out here either."
"Well, so now we know. The question is, what are we going to do about it?"
"What?" asked Beca, afraid the other girl somehow suspected her of snooping after all. "I'm sorry, I didn't meant to-"
"Calm down, silly." Chloe giggled on her end of the line. "I didn't mean anything by it, nothing bad anyway. I just think we should meet up over the holidays since we're so close, yeah? It's like kismet or something."
"Oh." There was some hesitation on Beca's part before she replied. "You don't have to do that if you don't want to, I mean, it's the holidays and you have your family there and everything..."
"Beca. If your family's anything like mine - and let's face it, family, as much as you love them, can still be... family at times, you know? - then you know as well as I do how nice it is to have a break from them sometimes." Chloe laughed again before continuing. "We're home for a few weeks, after all, that'll be more than enough time with my folks, trust me."
Beca hoped the relief wasn't too obvious in her voice. "I totally know what you mean. I might even be hiding away from my family as we speak." It was her turn to laugh as she relaxed and lay back on the bed.
"So, when are you picking me up then?"
"Oh, well, um, what are you doing later on this week?"
"I'm free tonight, actually, and it's not that late." Chloe's grin was nearly visible through the phone. "Why don't you come and get me right now?"
"Tonight? Ok, well, let me check that I can borrow the car, shouldn't be a problem though." Her mother was still busy with her relatives and probably wouldn't mind if Beca snuck out for a few hours, however she'd have to make sure the car wasn't blocked in by a relative's vehicle.
"Excellent! Now get a pen and paper so I can give you directions."
Driving slowly through the snowy streets of a Boston suburb, Beca glanced down at her cell phone on the console to double check Chloe's address. The streets were well lit, with the vast majority of homes having Christmas lights up and turned on, but the falling snow had picked up in intensity and was obscuring some of the street numbers on the homes. Thankfully there wasn't a lot of traffic in Chloe's neighbourhood so there were no cars behind her at least. Several cars were parked on either side of the street, however, and the dropping temperature made for a possibility of slippery roads, so that and the unfamiliarity with her destination made for slow progress.
A blue two story home came into view on the right side of the road, which matched the description Chloe had given her over the phone. Squinting at the partially snow covered number on the side of the house, which thankfully was in black and stood out against its white covering, Beca thought that it matched. She pulled into the one empty spot in the driveway, leaving the car running while putting it into park and reaching for her phone to text Chloe.
Before Beca could finish her text she saw the front door of the house open. Chloe, all bundled up in a winter jacket complete with a wool hat, mittens, and a scarf wrapped around her face, emerged from the doorway and headed for the car. Beca unlocked the doors and turned up the heater in anticipation of warming up the car for the other girl. Chloe opened the front passenger door and hopped in, smiling at Beca and immediately reaching over and hugging her, much to the brunette's surprise. With the steering wheel in the way, her seatbelt on, and the car still running there wasn't much else she could do other than let Chloe hug her.
"Hi you! So glad to see you!" She squeezed Beca once more before letting go and moving back to her side of the car, snapping her seatbelt on. "Can you believe we're so close together? IT'S A CHRISTMAS MIRACLE."
"I know, isn't it?" Beca smiled, brushing back some of her hair that'd gotten in her face. "It really is awesome. Wait, no, sorry." She cleared her throat and did her best Aubrey voice. "Aca-awesome!"
Chloe giggled and shook her head. "You're catching on now, good." She took off her mittens and undid her scarf as Beca backed out of the driveway. "So, where are you taking me on our first date, hmm?"
"You're such a helpless flirt, God." Beca rolled her eyes at the comment, though there might have been a little blushing. Had Chloe asked she'd have blamed it on having turned up the heater in the car, which she turned down a little bit now that they were sufficiently warmed up and on the move. "I was thinking we could grab a coffee somewhere maybe? Is there anywhere we can do that nearby?" She had passed a few potential places on the way there but Beca figured it was only polite to ask Chloe where she wanted to go.
"Totally. I know just the spot, and it's only a few blocks from here." Chloe tossed her winter accoutrements into the backseat and looked over at Beca. "So, how've your holidays been so far?"
"It's been a quiet couple of days but not too bad, I guess. Enjoying the break from classes but, you know. Mom is great but too much Mom can be, well." Beca shrugged as they approached an intersection. "Right here or left?"
"Oh, sorry, right here, then a left, and then straight though the next set of lights. And I know what you mean, Beca. I love my parents but another night stuck in the house and I probably would've lost my mind. You came along just in time!"
"Just call me Florence Nightingale." Beca smirked. "So you don't really have anyone else around to hang out with either, huh?"
Chloe shook her head. "Nope. My folks moved here just before I started college, before that we lived about two hundred miles west of here. I still have a lot of friends back there but it's a long drive, especially in the winter, and they've got their own family and friends to deal with." It was the red head's turn to shrug. "You know how it is. But what about you, where are all your friends?"
"Well, one of them's in the car with me right now." blurted Beca, before she realized how corny that sounded. "I mean, um. I... didn't really have a lot of close friends in high school. Most of my free time was devoted to my music, which as you may have realized is a pretty big part of my life. The ones I was somewhat close to, they went to college out of state and we've kinda drifted apart since then. And, like your friends, they're home for the holidays and have their own family and friends to deal with now, so I don't want to bother them."
"Beca, there's no way that you could bother them I bet. You're too awesome for that." Chloe smiled and reached over, patting one of the hands Beca had on the steering wheel.
"Thanks, Chloe, that's sweet of you, but I don't know about that." Beca pointed to a nearby building before her passenger could argue. "Hey, that's the place there, yeah?"
"Yup, that's it, and ooh, there's a spot over there." Chloe pointed to a parking space from which a car was just pulling out.
"How fortuitous. Excellent eye, first mate!" Beca chuckled as she navigated into the now vacant spot.
"Aye aye, Captain! ARRRR." Chloe covered one of her eyes with a hand, mimicking an eye patch. "LAND HO!"
"Dude, what'd you call me?!" Beca managed before dissolving into giggles at the other girl's antics.
The two of them continued carrying on as they entered the diner and found an open table at which to sit. Someone took their order and they chatted while waiting for their stuff to arrive. After catching up on what they'd done the last few days since seeing each other at school, the talk turned back to the Bellas and next semester as their food was being served.
"I'm so glad you decided to try out, Beca. I don't know where we'd be without you and the other new girls." Chloe took a sip of her latte. She'd also ordered a large frosted cinnamon bun to split with Beca, which the latter girl didn't know until it arrived and Chloe encouraged her to have some.
"Me too. About joining, I mean, because, well." Beca reached for a napkin to wipe away some excess frosting from her face. "We're not exactly killing it so far, you know? No offense to you guys who were there last year and did well, of course, but we're just... something's missing."
"No no, I know what you mean. At least there's been no vomiting on stage this year, right?" Chloe chuckled a little, shaking her head as she looked down at her latte. "You're right, of course, we're just going through the motions it seems."
"Mmm." Beca paused before replying, taking a sip of her own beverage, a peppermint flavoured mocha drink. "So hey, this may seem like a totally unrelated question, but how's Aubrey doing?"
"Oh, she's doing well. She flew back home out west the day after I left, and she's pretty busy with her family and friends too." Chloe snapped her fingers as she remembered something else. "Oh yeah, get this. She's even hired a vocal coach to help her over the break, so that's tying up her time too. She was this close to e-mailing everyone in the Bellas to demand we all do the same too, until I talked her down from it."
"You haven't talked to her that much then, I guess, if she's so busy?" Beca picked up on something along those lines from her friend's words and decided to pry just a little bit.
"Yeah, but it's whatever." Chloe waved a hand dismissively before tearing off some more cinnamon bun for herself. "Besides, hey, I've got a new friend to hang out with now, so it's all good."
"Well, yeah, I am awesome, this is true." Beca allowed herself to smile at that for a second. "But you and Aubrey, you guys are... you know." She paused there for a second, searching for the right word. "Close."
"Why Beca. Do I detect a little note of jealousy in there?" Chloe winked. "We are very good friends, yes, but that's it." It was her turn to pause for a moment. "Right now, anyway. It's, um. It's kinda complicated. Like all my relationships, you could say. In fact, it's my default relationship status on Facebook."
"I know - I mean, I understand what you're saying." Beca quickly corrected herself. "Relationships can be tricky sometimes, or so I hear. I've never really had one myself, so." Rather than get into that, she attempted to veer the conversation back towards Aubrey. "But you and Aubrey, if I can ask, you both... were... together? Is that what you meant?"
Chloe shook her head. "No, not so much. Don't get me wrong, I love her dearly, and I think she cares about me a great deal too, but it just wouldn't work out. She's so... so deadset on things. It's amazing how much drive she has, and kinda admirable, but it's like she has blinders on and won't focus on anything other than the Bellas and making nationals." She took another sip of her drink and continued. "But yes, the answer to your question, not that you asked it in so many words, is that I do like girls. And guys, which you know, with the whole shower incident." Chloe smirked at that.
"Oh, dude, no no no, I wasn't trying to... I mean, not that there's anything wrong with that, I just... with Aubrey, you know, I wondered if..." Beca stumbled over her apology, hoping she hadn't offended the other girl.
"Beca, Beca, chill. It's ok, promise." Chloe couldn't help but laugh a little at how flustered the brunette had gotten. "I offered the information, I was just teasing you. I really don't care, when it comes to that kind of thing I'm just really open I guess. Which you should've guessed by now, hon."
"I should've known better, huh?" Beca's cheeks were still flushed and she was sure they'd stay that way for awhile but at least Chloe wasn't upset with her. Further, she'd gotten the answer to the question that had been lingering in her mind for some time now on top of it all. "Still, I'm sorry. No more questions about relationships."
"Whoa, now, not so fast. I didn't agree to that, and I do believe you owe me some information yourself, ma'am. Quid pro quo and all that." Chloe grinned and tore off some more cinnamon bun.
"Hey now, you just said you volunteered that info!" protested Beca.
"I did, but that still doesn't mean you get it for free. Come on, you've got to tell me something after that."
Sighing, Beca realized it would be pointless to argue with the red head. "Ok, ok. What do you want to know?"
"What did you meant that you've never really had a relationship before, exactly?"
"What I said. I haven't really had one." Beca shrugged a little and helped herself to more of the bun. "There's not much else to say about it."
"Oh, bullshit there isn't." Chloe said with a small grin. "What about high school? Didn't you ever go on a date back then? And - oh my god, does this mean that you're a vi-"
"NO." Beca shushed her, looking around at the other tables to see if anyone was listening to their conversation. "No, I'm not that innocent, Chloe. I just... I don't know. Just never had time for dating in high school. I was too busy focusing on studying, thinking that if I was a straight A student my folks would send me to LA like I wanted, to work in the music industry. That's all I've ever wanted, so that's all I really thought about."
"But not all the time if you're not... you know." Chloe folded her hands under her chin and leaned on them, clearly enjoying making Beca so uncomfortable.
"Gosh, Chloe, this is a family establishment. I think." She rolled her eyes but there was a tiny smile on her own face. "Yes, not totally. There was your standard garden variety incidents of holding hands, kissing, necking, whatever when I was younger, and even now, come to think of it, this guy I work with at the radio station is always flirty all of the time," Beca paused, thinking about how hard Jesse tried sometimes. "But when it comes to... it." She took another look around the room before elaborating. "There was this one boy I was kind of sort of seeing back when I was sixteen. He was my first, but it was only once, and it wasn't anything to remember, trust me." Beca went for a drink of her mocha, pausing with it halfway to her mouth to clarify. "It was consensual, though, don't get me wrong, it just sucked. And was brief. Veeeeery brief."
Chloe burst out laughing at that admission. She tried to apologize but couldn't get the words out because of all the laughter. It was infectious and Beca found herself laughing along with the red head despite the fact they were laughing about her own awkward experiences. This time people in the diner actually were staring at them but Beca realized she didn't particularly care.
Once the ruckus had died down, Chloe took a napkin and dabbed at the tears of laughter lingering in her eyes. "Oh Beca, honey. I'm so sorry but that was just hysterical." She chuckled again before getting herself under control. "Sad, but hysterical." She reached out and patted the other girl's hand, squeezing it slightly before pulling her own hand back.
"Tell me about it. I'm glad that my personal shortcomings are entertaining at least."
Chloe snorted. "That's a poor choice of words there, Bec." She commenced laughing again before shaking her hand and raising her hands. "No, no, I'll be good, I'll be good, I swear."
Beca just rolled her eyes and looked at the remainder of the bun sitting on the plate between them. "You want to split the last bit of that?"
"Sure." Chloe reached out for it at the same time Beca did, their fingers brushing against each other slightly. She didn't pull back but simply took hold of one half of the bun, letting Beca pull apart the other half. "But with all due respect, that was an easy question. So, to ramp it up a little: you mentioned being with a guy, but what about the fairer sex?"
Her eyes went wide as she chewed on the half cinnamon bun she'd taken. Thankfully they'd already broken the ice somewhat and had broached such delicate topics of conversation already or else Beca was sure she would've broken a blood vessel or three with her blushing. As it was her cheeks reddened noticeably as she coughed and went for a sip of her mocha to clear her throat before she could reply.
"You mean, like, as in a relationship?" she finally sputtered out.
"No, because you've made it clear you've never really had one of those. As in anything else." Chloe calmly sipped her latte, making Beca wonder just how anyone could possibly be so at ease discussing something so private.
"Oh, well, no. I never have. Again, not that there's anything wrong with that, I just have never..." Beca wasn't sure how to finish that sentence.
"Hey, it's ok. I don't believe you do think there's anything wrong with it, Beca, I'm possibly just being a little bit of a bitch and enjoying teasing you far too much than I should. Especially at Christmas time." She chuckled and shook her head. "I'm sorry, we can drop it."
Relieved at that, Beca wiped the remainder of frosting off on a napkin. "Thank you. And it's ok, I shouldn't be so sensitive. And thank you for being so cool. It's really awesome that you can be so open about that kind of thing."
"No worries, hon. It's just obvious to me, I guess. Love is love, you know? Who cares who it's with as long as you're happy and you're not hurting anyone? I just wish more people thought that way. And I know you do, which is awesome." Once again she reached across the table and squeezed Beca's hand.
"Hey, I try. Peace, love, and understanding for the win, right?" Beca grinned at the other girl and actually squeezed back a little bit.
Chloe kept her hand there for a few more seconds before she looked down at the watch resting on her wrist, pulling back to examine it more closely. "Crap, I should probably get back home. Mom wanted me to be back in an hour and it's been closer to two."
"Oh, has it?" Beca had totally lost track of the time. A quick glance at her cell phone revealed that Chloe was in fact right. "Yeah, my mother will be wondering where I am too." She started firing her off a quick text to let her know where she was and that she'd be on her way home soon, grateful her mother was at least able to receive texts, even if she wasn't the best at sending them.
"Yeah, time flies when you're having fun. Or being uncomfortable, I suppose." Chloe winked at Beca again before waving the waitress over for their bill. "Hey, tell you what, I'll get this one and that means we'll have to meet up again so you can make it up to me. Deal?"
"Of course, that's no problem." Beca grinned, glad to hear that they'd be meeting up again sometime soon. "It's a date."
They met up for coffee once more two days later, since both of them ended up tied down with family commitments the day after their first get together. Beca's mother hadn't been too pleased that she'd gotten home so late but she was glad that her daughter had something else to do while she was home at least.
The second meeting was at a place of Beca's choosing, and ended up being closer to her neck of the woods than Chloe's, who drove over to pick up the brunette this time around. Beca would've been more than happy to drive but Chloe had insisted on being fair. She arrived a little early and, having rung the doorbell before Beca realized she was there, got to meet the brunette's mother, who promptly insisted she come in out of the cold while waiting for her daughter. Much teasing followed later, as Beca's mom came very close to breaking out the old baby photo album before buckling to Beca's cries of protest, but Chloe ensured her she thought her mom was very sweet. Chloe also promised that she could meet her parents if she wanted, which Beca was pretty sure was just a joke, but she didn't ask.
The place Beca chose was different from the place they'd first met at two nights prior. Whereas the first place was large and fairly crowded, the second place they met at was smaller and quieter. Beca thought it would be better suited to them, based on their last meeting and the conversation they'd had.
The coffee shop that was their destination was almost empty when they arrived. The girls ordered their drinks and took a little booth in the back of the shop for themselves. Even though the atmosphere was more conducive to conversation, however, the topic never veered far from safe topics, like upcoming Bellas gigs in the new year and what courses they were taking in the next semester. Topics like relationships and dating never came up, which made Beca wonder whether she'd crossed some invisible line during their previous meeting. Chloe seemed different somehow, not necessarily in a bad way, it was just a tamer discussion than before. Beca wasn't sure why that should bother her but for some reason it did. It was still a nice evening so she shrugged it off and just focused on enjoying the other girl's company.
Before too long Chloe was dropping Beca off back at her mother's house. Parking the car outside in the driveway, the red head left the car running and turned down the stereo before Beca got out.
"Hey, Beca, listen. Sorry if I was a little... I don't know, off tonight, I guess. I had a long phone call with Aubrey earlier today and it's thrown me off a bit."
"Oh, I'm sorry to hear that. It's ok, really, I had a lot of fun." Beca said. "I mean, I thought you were a little... not upset, but distracted, maybe? I just chalked it up to grades being released today, honestly, and I wasn't about to ask about those."
"That's right, those did come out today!" Chloe laughed and snapped her fingers. "I should probably check those too. But yes, distracted is a good word for it. Aubrey's just been having a hard time and it's difficult listening to that and not being able to help, you know? Her father is just so..." She sighed and shook her head. "I'm sorry, I shouldn't be bothering you with this, Bec."
"Hey, no, don't worry about it, Chloe." She tentatively reached out and placed her hand on the red head's arm. "No one likes feeling helpless, I can relate to that. And what else are friends for if not for listening, right? It'll be ok." Beca hesitated and then leaned over to give Chloe a quick hug. The other girl's perfume filled Beca's nostrils, a very pleasant scent, and she couldn't help but notice how soft and warm Chloe's cheek was as her own brushed against it.
Pulling back after a few seconds, Chloe tucked a loose strand of her red locks back under her hat. "You're sweet to worry, Beca. Thanks, I needed that." She smiled as she thought about something for a second. "Hey, I almost forgot, I've got an idea. Saturday night, what are you doing?"
"Just watching holiday movies with my mom and whoever comes over, I imagine. Nothing set in stone though." she quickly added. "Why, what'd you have in mind?"
"There's this amazing club that's having a huge holiday bash. We should totally go and dance our asses off! It's been far too long since I've been out on the dance floor without a care, what with all the Bellas events and studying and classes and all those things." Chloe explained. "It'd be perfect, and I don't think we've ever really been dancing before, have we?"
"Well, no, it's not usually my thing..." It was hard for Beca to say no to Chloe, however, which she was quickly discovering. "If you really want to though we could check it out, I guess."
"Of course I do, and you do too. And if you don't, well, just consider it my Christmas present then." Chloe said with a wink. "There's this DJ spinning there too, DJ Strider I think, and-"
"Wait wait wait! DJ Strider is going to be there?!" Beca's eyes went wide. "Dude, why didn't you say so? Hell yeah I'm in!" She cleared her throat and lowered her voice back to a normal decibel level. "I mean, I would've gone with you just because you asked, of course, but that's so totally awesome."
"Yeah, sure, sure." Chloe pretended to roll her eyes. "You know who he is then, I take it?"
Beca nodded emphatically. "He's a pretty popular DJ from the UK, he's done some pretty sweet mash ups and remixes, and if I could just get a chance to talk to him, maybe pick his brain about how he got into the business, that would be phenomenal." She let out a low whistle at the thought. "I mean, just getting to hear him play will be really awesome, wow. How'd you manage to get tickets to something like that anyway?"
"Oh, I know a guy." Chloe smiled mischievously. "Alright then, it's a done deal." The red head clapped her hands. "Thanks again, Beca, I had a great time tonight. And thanks for listening." She reached over and gave the brunette another quick hug before Beca hopped out of the car and entered the house. A quick glance through the living room curtains revealed that Chloe had waited for her to get inside before leaving, which put a small smile on Beca's face before she went to tell her mother she was home for the night.
Saturday night was a snowy night and they were both concerned about parking at the venue so they decided to take the bus to the club, making driving in potentially worsening winter weather less of a concern.
There was a bus stop fairly close to both of their houses so neither of them had to wait in the falling snow too long for the bus to arrive. Beca was the second of the pair to board the bus, smiling as she did so and saw Chloe saving her a seat in the back. The red head waved as she saw Beca walking down the aisle and she patted the space next to her.
"Good evening, madam!" Beca plopped down into her seat and popped out one of her earbuds, the one closest to her friend so she could hear what Chloe was saying. While waiting for the bus she'd been listening to music, of course, and she reached into her coat pocket to turn off her iPod.
"Good evening to you as well, my dear." Chloe saw the dangling earpiece and reached out for it. "Ooh, what are you listening to there?" Before Beca could answer she'd leaned in close and placed the earbud into her ear, listening intently to try and guess what song it was and smirking when she figured it out. "Shoot me down, but I won't fall, I am titaaaaaaaniiiiiiiiummmmmmm..."
Beca blushed slightly as she thought back to their meeting in the shower. "You got me. What can I say, it's a great song." She glanced over as Chloe was bopping her head to the music. The same perfume wafted across her nostrils faintly, bringing a smile to Beca's face. She found herself leaning in toward the other girl but caught herself before she actually came in contact with Chloe.
Then the song was over and Chloe removed the earbud, returning it to the brunette with a smile. Beca took it back and turned off her iPod, returning them both to her coat pocket.
"So, are you all ready for tonight?" Beca had been looking forward to the evening since their last meeting, and she'd spent more time than she'd care to admit getting dressed and fixing her hair for the occasion. As a result she wasn't wearing a hat, for fear of messing up what she'd done, and she was pretty cold as a result.
"Mmmhmm, I'm good to go." Frowning at Beca's lack of a hat, Chloe reached out and touched one of her ears, which was glowing red. "You must be freezing, god, your ear's so red and cold."
"I didn't want to ruin my hair, though. I'm ok, I'll warm up again in a few minutes." The bus was plenty warm and she was already defrosting, as evidenced by the tingling sensation in her ear which was also slightly painful.
"Well, for what it's worth, it's really cute, so I guess I can't blame you." Chloe grinned. "Oh, before I forget, I've got a little something for you..." She pulled her purse up from the floor and placed it on her lap, rifling through it for a handful of seconds before coming up with something in her hand. "Tada! Here you go!"
Beca took the small plastic card from Chloe, squinting as she looked at it closely. It was a laminated driver's license of a brunette who was somewhat similar looking to her, whose name was Jen Smith, and who was apparently twenty two years old.
"A fake ID?" said Beca, stating the obvious.
"You're welcome Beca!" replied Chloe in a sing song voice. "Or should I say you're welcome, Jen." She giggled and pulled out another ID, this one of a twenty three year old red headed girl named Jessica Jones who bore more than a passing resemblance to Chloe. "Pro tip: be sure to remember your birthday and your zodiac sign in case they ask you at the door."
"Why am I thinking this isn't your first time doing this?" Beca smirked and looked back down at her card, memorizing the information as Chloe advised.
"Because you're brilliant and insightful, not to mention beautiful, Jen." Chloe returned her ID to her purse and placed it back on the floor.
"Well d'uh, Jess." Beca laughed, putting her ID in her pocket next to her iPod for now. "Why do we need them though? Unless the party..."
"Yup, it's not an all ages affair, so if we want to get in we've got to be twenty one and up. Or at least make them believe we're twenty one and up." Chloe smiled and leaned back in her seat. "It also means we can drink too, if we want to anyway, but if we don't then we don't have to either. No pressure, of course, and the main thing is you get to meet DJ What's His Name."
"Strider, DJ Strider." Beca quickly corrected her. "And you're right, as long as we get inside and can dance the night away anything else is a bonus." She smiled and looked out the window at the falling snow, which seemed to be falling thicker and faster. "Looks like it's getting worse outside."
"Yeah, it really does. Taking the bus was a good idea, I really wouldn't want to have to drive in this weather, let alone try to find a decent parking spot."
"Not to mention parking far away and having to walk to the club would be horrible too." Beca chimed in.
"Totally the right call, Bec." Chloe agreed.
It didn't take the bus too long to reach their stop, which was just a block away from the dance club. They moved as fast they could in the inclement weather to get to the club, thankful that the line to get inside was at least moving quickly and didn't extend too far outside into the elements.
Once they got through the doors and inside the building, they spotted a bouncer next to the ticketing window who was checking certain people's IDs. They exchanged glances as they made their way through the line but they didn't say anything for fear of being overheard and outed. When it was their turn to pay the cover charge, the bouncer gave them both a long look before turning his attention to the people standing behind them, who'd obviously spent some time priming up at home before coming out to the club. Beca and Chloe quickly paid the cover fee, checked their coats, and scooted inside the main area before anyone else could question their eligibility.
The club was already pretty full, and the music had a fair number of people on the dance floor. Another DJ, who went by the name of DJ Haze according to a sign near the booth, was playing the music as a warm up act of sorts for DJ Strider.
The music was so loud that the only way to be heard was by shouting, so instead of yelling Chloe instead nodded towards the bar area after getting Beca's attention.
Beca glanced from Chloe, to the bar in the general direction in which she was nodding, then back to Chloe, shaking her head in response. "No thanks, that's ok, really!"
Chloe nodded vigorously, raising an invisible glass to her lips and drinking deeply. Ignoring Beca's further head shaking and shouts, she headed for the bar with the brunette in tow. There were a lot of people around but it was still possible to maneuver through the crowd with minimal effort, as long as they took their time. Once they squeezed their way through to the bar itself, Chloe flagged down the bartender.
"Hi! We'll have a couple of screwdrivers please!" she yelled, holding up two of her fingers for emphasis. Beca tried to interject and held up just one of her fingers but Chloe reached out and pulled it down before the bartender could realize what she was going.
"Chloe!" she protested.
"Nuh-uh, one drink, Beca, come on. Just one! It's Christmas!" Chloe retaliated. "Neither of us are driving so it'll be totally fine!"
"One and only one, that's it." There was no arguing with the red head so instead Beca chose to bargain. She tried to look serious and tough but there was a little smile on her face as she tried to glare at Chloe, who was just laughing.
The bartender was quick with their drinks, and Chloe paid for the beverages before sliding one over to Beca.
"What is this?" Tentatively sniffing the glass, Beca frowned as she tried to guess what it was.
"A screwdriver - vodka and orange juice. Try it, it's good, I promise!" Chloe took a big sip of hers to demonstrate.
"It'll fend off scurvy if nothing else, I suppose." joked Beca. She raised the glass and slowly, carefully tipped it upwards, pausing when the beverage hit her lips and imbibing a tiny amount. It was stronger than she'd anticipated so she wrinkled her nose a little and quickly brought the glass back down, drawing a chuckle from Chloe.
"Alright, message received. Next time we'll try something a little more subtle."
"Only one drink, remember? There's not going to be a next time, Chloe." Beca paused before adding. "Not tonight, anyway." They might be out together again over the holidays, after all.
"Gotcha." Chloe winked and took another mouthful of her screwdriver. "Come on, there's a table free over there." She pointed to a row of tall chairs and tables along one wall of the club where there were a few empty tables for the taking.
They made their way to a free table and took a seat. The music was a little less loud there, as they were somewhat tucked away behind a wall, which made it easier for them to talk to and, more importantly, hear each other.
"The music's pretty good, huh?" Chloe did a little bit of chair dancing along with the current song.
"Eh, it's not bad, I guess." Beca shrugged. "Nothing new or original, really. Just sounds like he tuned with the bass a bit, tweaked it here and there, I don't think he's added all that much to be honest." She blinked and then shook her head. "I'm sorry, wow, that's pretty mean of me."
"Hey, it's what you do, girl, you know what you're talking about." Sipping some more of her drink, Chloe continued to bounce in her seat. "I just know I can dance to it, so that's the most important part."
"That's what we're here for, yeah." Beca grinned and brushed back some of her hair. "It's just hard for me not to deconstruct music when I hear it, you know? I just can't wait to hear what Strider's got in store for us." She relaxed a little and took a big sip of her screwdriver, dancing a little in her chair as well.
"That's the spirit, Beca!" Chloe held up her glass and motioned for the brunette to raise hers as well, clinking the glasses together noisily once she did.
They finished their drinks a few minutes later and not a moment after they'd done so Chloe was dragging Beca out to dance. While they had been drinking more people had filed in and the place was truly packed now, including the dance floor. They were able to find enough room for them both but it put them very close to each other, dancing side by side and face to face for virtually the entire time.
Beca wasn't complaining, since Chloe was a fantastic dancer, and it had been ages since she'd actually been out dancing period. Dancing with Chloe was especially fun, because Chloe was... she couldn't quite put it into words, but she knew that it was a good thing.
After a few songs there was an announcement that DJ Haze was finished with his set and that there'd be a fifteen minute break before DJ Strider took over the turntable, followed by a large amount of applause and hollering. Beca was amongst the loudest of the shouters, with Chloe raising her hands over her head and clapping wildly. They continued to play music from some random dance album, so Beca and Chloe took the opportunity to get another drink at the bar.
Beca volunteered to get the next round, seeing as how Chloe bought the first drinks. The red head protested at first but acquiesced after Beca insisted. While she'd finished her screwdriver - at a much slower pace than Chloe - she didn't feel like having another one this time around. Her intent was to have a soda or a bottle of water, something non-alcoholic, but as she got to the bar something caught her eye. There was a sign advertising drink specials, which had been obscured by people standing in front of it previously, but now she was able to read it clearly.
It was a list of nightly drink specials, with each night having a two for one deal on a particular beverage or a discounted price for something or other. That night's special was a two for one special on white Russians, which Beca had heard of before but had never experienced. One of her friends back in high school had warned her of the dangers of the drink, how it was so easy to consume mass quantities of it without being able to taste the alcohol, and how that could really come back to haunt you in the morning.
Her first thought was to just get one for Chloe, thinking that she'd probably enjoy it, while getting something else for herself. The deal was two for one, however, so if she was just going to get one for Chloe then she'd either have to force her friend to drink both of them - something to which she probably wouldn't object, but still - or she'd have to refuse the essentially free drink. Plus it would cost her more money to buy herself a different drink, and then there was the whole challenge of having to carry three drinks back to their table through the crowded club instead of just two. When she really thought about it, the little voice in her head told her it made more sense for her to just get two white Russians than to get anything else.
The bartender turned to Beca and pointed at her, eyebrows raised in question and leaning in to hear her order over the loud music, placing her on the spot. There was a crowd of people on either side of her and behind her so she had to either order or get out of there.
"Um, hi, I'll have two white Russians, please." Beca held up two fingers like Chloe had earlier, caving to temptation and hoping she wouldn't regret it in the morning.
The bartender fixed a pair of the beverages for her, sliding them over to her as Beca paid for them. She took them in hand and deftly made her way back through the crowd towards Chloe. Beca raised one of the glasses to catch the other girl's attention as she drew near.
"Ooh, are those what I think they are, Beca?" Chloe clapped her hands together and took one of the drinks from the brunette's hands, taking a sip of it. "I do believe they are indeed. Excellent!"
"I wasn't going to get one but they're two for one so how could I say no, right?" Beca tried some of her own drink, pausing for a few seconds after doing so. "Oh wow, yeah, these are dangerous alright."
"Dangerously good you mean." Chloe said with a wink.
Before Beca could reply an announcement came over the PA system, announcing that DJ Strider was about to start his set, which was interrupted by an immense amount of applause. Beca and Chloe looked at each other and silently agreed to make a beeline to the dance floor, drinks clutched tightly in hand.
Trying to dance on a packed floor with a glass in their hands combined with the lack of a strong taste of alcohol and working up a sweat resulted in the drinks being drained pretty quickly. Chloe volunteered to get some more, since Beca had gotten the last round, and Beca was having to much fun to argue about having more to drink.
While the red head was at the bar, Beca made a quick trip to the washroom. On the way back to the dance floor her route took her past the DJ booth, where Strider was busy playing his music. He had just set up another song when he took a step away from the equipment, reaching over to the side of the booth where he kept his drink. Beca realized that she was just a few steps away from that edge of the booth and that if she were to approach him then maybe, just maybe, she could get his attention and have a brief conversation with him.
Looking down at herself to ensure she looked at least somewhat presentable, Beca steeled her courage and walked up to the booth. She cleared her throat in an attempt to get Strider's attention before she realized that there was no way he could've heard that over the music. Her instinct was to abort her mission but before she could do so, Strider happened to look in her direction and waved at her.
"Hey! You there!"
Beca turned around to see if there was someone else he might've been talking to instead of her before replying. "Do you mean me?"
"I would've called you by name if I knew it, but yeah, you." He grinned at Beca. "What's your name?"
"Beca, my name's Beca!" she said, beaming while beginning to extend her hand to the DJ. "I'm a huge-"
"Beca, another one of these, please, yeah?" He held an empty bottle in one hand, pointing to it with the other and shaking it back and forth a little for emphasis.
"Oh, I don't work here, actually." She pointed to the musical equipment. "I just wanted to say how much I love your work, and how great your mixes are."
"And to buy me a drink, perhaps?" Strider winked, leaning over the side of the booth. "Seriously, thanks, love. Always nice to hear from a fan, especially one as beautiful as yourself." He turned to an actual employee of the club who was passing by and indicated he was out of liquor, causing the girl to head for the bar on his behalf. Strider turned back to Beca once the employee was on her way. "Guess you're off the hook then, eh?"
"I guess, yeah." Beca laughed lightly.
"D'you want to come in and see my setup then?" There was a little step leading into the booth, with a door that swung inward to the interior which Strider presumptuously swung open before she could respond.
"Oh, well, I don't want to interfere with your gig or anything."
"Nah, it's alright, I'm due to have a break any how. Plus this song's good for a bit." He nodded over at the equipment while waving Beca up into the booth.
"Alright then, for a little bit." Beca gave in and placed her foot on the small stair, using her other one to brace herself on the side of the booth.
Strider was quick to reach out and take her hand, helping her inside and still holding her hand once she was in. He pulled her hand up and bent down slightly at the same time, planting a little kiss on the back of her hand before she could pull it back. After the kiss she managed to extradite her arm, smiling awkwardly at the unwanted advance.
"I can't stay long, I've got someone waiting for me, so." Beca folded her arms behind her back.
"Ah, I see. Boyfriend, then, I'm guessing?" Strider smirked, leaning back and folding his arms across his chest.
"No, not a boyfriend-"
"Perfect then!" he interrupted, clapping his hands together and leaning back towards Beca. "Now, we were talking about showing you my equipment, yeah?" He winked again at her. The booth they were in, while far from private, gave them a little cover from anyone outside it who wasn't actively leaning over the edge to look inside, at least from about the waist down.
"Beca! There you are!" Chloe yelled out, popping up over the stair into the booth since they'd left the little door ajar. "I've been looking everywhere for you."
"Chloe! DJ Strider, this is Chloe, Chloe, this is, you know. The DJ." Beca quickly scooted over beside the red head and away from the creepy DJ. "This is who I'm here with, like I was saying, this is-"
"Her girlfriend." Chloe finished. She slid her arm around Beca's waist, pulling her closer to her. Strider's eyebrows raised at that, but Chloe never blinked, extending her hand out to him. "Chloe, it's a real pleasure to meet you."
Shaking her hand, he looked from Chloe to Beca and then back to Chloe. "Same, I'm sure." He rubbed his chin and reached out for the drink the employee returned and handed to him. "So, girlfriend, eh?"
"Well, we just started dating, kinda." Beca added, leaning into Chloe's embrace.
"She's a little shy, at least in public. At home though, phew, look out." Chloe said with a wink, eliciting a blush from Beca.
"Right, right. Well, ladies, listen." Strider clapped once again, this time less enthusiastically than before. "Lovely chatting with you both but I'm in the middle of, you know." He nodded towards the equipment. "So we'll see you later now, ta ta."
"Bye!: Chloe said in a bubbly tone, reaching down to grab Beca's hand and lead her out of the booth. Beca just went with it, trying hard not to laugh at the situation. Once they were outside they stopped, but Chloe didn't let go of her hand.
"Thank you so much, Chloe, it was getting a little awkward there." She looked back over her shoulder at the booth, only to see that Strider was still looking at them both. "Hey, I think he's still-"
As Beca turned back around to face Chloe, her cheek came into contact with the red head's hand, which Chloe had raised to the side of Beca's head. Before Beca could ask what she was doing, she found herself pulled in closer to Chloe and then they were kissing.
Closing her eyes reflexively, Beca just went with it. Presumably Chloe had also seen the DJ eyeing them as they left and she was just trying to add a ring of authenticity to their story, but whatever the reason it was happening so she might as well go with it.
The first thing that struck her was how soft Chloe's lips were against hers. It had been awhile since Beca had kissed anyone, so it was amazing just to experience the basic sensation of being kissed, however the completely foreign texture and softness certainly elevated the feeling.
Beca leaned in closer, moaning slightly as she pressed her lips back against Chloe's. Her arms slipped around the red head's waist, while Chloe's other hand went to the back of the brunette's neck, fingers sliding through her hair. Beca's mouth parted slightly as she felt just the tip of Chloe's tongue gently brushing against her lips.
And then the kiss was over, with Chloe pulling back, a wide smile on her face. Beca's eyes remained closed for a few more heartbeats before they fluttered open.
"Wow." was all she could manage.
"Think he bought it?" Chloe asked. Her eyes didn't stray from Beca.
"Bought what?" Beca said, blinking as she removed a hand from Chloe's waist to brush back some of her own hair out of her face. That reminded her that she still had her arms around the other girl, and she slowly withdrew them, taking a step back from Chloe. "Oops, sorry."
"It's ok, actually." Chloe took her own hands away from Beca just the same, lowering them back to her side. She finally looked away long enough to glance at the booth, where she caught Strider giving them an angry glance before returning to his equipment. "And for the record I think he did."
"Oh, ok, good. That's a good thing." Beca smiled awkwardly, still staring at Chloe. "So we should, um."
"Get a drink?" suggested Chloe.
"Dude, yes, please."
The rest of the evening consisted of equal parts drinking and dancing, both of which involved avoiding any discussion of what had happened. Before the kiss Beca had been feeling slightly light headed from the two drinks she'd had, but since then her head was really swimming. She had no idea if Chloe felt the same way but if the other girl felt uncomfortable in any way she certainly wasn't showing it.
Eventually the time came for them to leave. The club was still open but DJ Strider was long since finished with his set, and more importantly the buses were about to start their last routes of the evening. They had consumed several more white Russians in the interim and were more than slightly tipsy, giggling like mad as they made their way through the crowd and got their coats out of the coat check.
The cold weather sobered them up considerably once they left the building, pulling their jackets around themselves tightly and huddling together for warmth as they walked to the bus stop. The snow was falling much faster than it had before, filling up the streets despite any efforts to plow the roads, and it didn't show any signs of letting up any time soon. Thankfully no one else was at the bus stop, meaning there was room on the wooden bench inside the enclosed shelter for them to sit and wait. They sat side by side, still staying close, both for warmth and out of necessity, as the bench was rather small.
"So, um." Beca started, unsure of what to say now that there was no more dancing or drinking to distract them. "About tonight..."
"I had an absolute blast, Beca." Chloe smiled. "It really was fun, don't you think?"
"Oh yeah, I had a lot of fun, totally." Beca was quick to nod in agreement. "I've discovered a new alcoholic beverage to enjoy, had a blast dancing, got to meet a big name DJ, even if he was a jerk-"
"A complete and total jerk." Chloe chimed in.
"A complete and total jerk," echoed Beca. "And I also got to... to hang out with you."
"Mmm." Chloe grinned at the brunette, leaning her shoulder in a little closer against Beca's.
Before either of them could say anything else, the bus came around corner. They jumped to their feet, fishing their fares out and making their way through the snow to the curb. The bus was nearly empty at that late hour and they had no trouble finding a seat near the front of the bus behind the driver, which was also close to a large heater to help keep them warm.
As they were essentially going backwards from the previous route, Beca's mother's house was the first of their residences to appear. As Beca started to think of how to say good night to Chloe the bus driver announced that this would be their final stop of the evening.
"What? But there's more stops to make after this, aren't there?" Chloe asked the driver.
"During the day time and early evening, yes, but after midnight the schedule changes." He pointed to the pamphlet holder on one of the bus walls which held several copies of that particular bus's schedule. Closer inspection showed that the driver was right, that they would've had to take a different bus to get to Chloe's house, which was too late now.
"Don't worry, you can stay at my place." There was no way she was letting her friend try and walk that distance. "It's too late to call for a ride, and there's no way either of us can drive."
"What about your mother though? Do you think she'll mind?"
"She's not even home, when she knew I'd be gone for the evening she went over to my aunt's house. They're a good hour or so away so she's staying the night." Which made Beca realize she'd essentially ljust invited Chloe to spend the night with her without any one home.
"Oh, well, if that's the case then sure. It's not like we have any other options anyway, right?" Chloe reasoned. "I mean, not like I don't want to stay or anything."
"No, yeah, I know what you mean." said Beca. "It's ok, seriously."
They both got up and exited the bus, jackets once again wrapped around them tightly as they headed for the house. Beca was quick to find her keys and unlock the door, letting Chloe in first then shutting and locking it behind her. She turned on the lights in the hallway before reaching out to hang her keys up, misjudging the distance and accidentally dropping them onto the floor.
"Dammit!" Beca bent down to pick up the keys and this time carefully hung them up. She turned and started to take off her winter coat while Chloe, who had already hung hers up in the closet, texted her mother to let her know she'd be sleeping over at Beca's place.
"I'll just crash on the couch then." Chloe looked into the living room next door, nodding to the large sofa on the other side of the room.
"You don't have to stay there, Chloe. There's room upstairs." Beca hung up her own coat. "We have a guest room, I mean, with a bed and everything. It'll be much more comfortable than the couch."
"Ok, if you don't mind." she replied.
"Of course not." Beca stifled a yawn and then. "Gonna grab a bottle of water before going to sleep though, I think. Want one?"
"Yes please, that's an excellent idea." Chloe agreed.
Once they had their water, Beca headed for the stairs with Chloe right behind her. At the top of the stairs she pointed out the washroom to the other girl, which was the first room on the floor. Right next to that was her mother's room, then the guest bedroom, and finally her own bedroom.
"That's the spare room right there, next to mine." Beca pointed to both rooms as she mentioned them. "So if you need anything during the night you know where to find me. Just in case."
"Mmmhmm, I will. Know where to find you, I mean." Chloe grinned, brushing back some of her hair behind her ear.
"Did you..." Beca paused before continuing. "Did you want to see my bedroom?" She wasn't exactly sure why she was asking but yet there she was, asking away.
"Ok." Chloe said with a smile, following Beca as she entered her room.
Once they were inside Beca made a little flourishing motion with her hand. "Tada!" The room was painted a lovely shade of blue, light but not too light, and while the walls were mostly empty - most of her decorations were now in her dorm room, after all - there was a lovely dresser and set of nightstands with all kinds of little knick knacks arranged just so on them.
Chloe took a good look around, her smile widening. "Oh wow, Beca, this is really cute."
Beca just shrugged, moving over to adjust the sheets on her still unmade bed to at least make it look a bit more presentable. "Thanks, it needs some work since I haven't really lived here in awhile, but it's not bad I guess." She folded her arms and looked around, taking it in.
Chloe sat down on the bed, bouncing on it a little. "Nice, soft bed too, which is important." She grinned and, after hesitating for a second, reached out and patted the space on the bed beside her.
Beca set her water down on the dresser and sat down next to the red head. She bounced a little as well in imitation of the other girl. Not sure what to say, she just turned and raised her eyebrows questioningly to Chloe, a small grin on her own face.
"About earlier tonight." Chloe reached out and put her hand on top of Beca's. "I meant to talk to you about it earlier but, well, it was kinda loud and we were too busy having fun."
"I like having fun with you, Chloe." Beca interjected, keeping her hand beneath the soft skin of Chloe's, where it was nice and warm.
"I'm glad to hear that, Beca." She smiled and squeezed the brunette's hand a little. "Because while I was trying to protect you from the creep, DJ Rider or Striper-"
"Strider." added Beca.
"Strider, the jerk." Chloe smirked. "Anyway, that's why I kissed you, but I'd by lying if I said I hadn't thought about kissing you before."
"Really?" Beca blushed at the admission but didn't move her hand or herself away from Chloe.
"Really. Ever since I first met you, the way you were with Aubrey, and then that day in the shower... you leave a memorable impression, Beca. It makes it hard for anyone to forget you." Chloe chuckled a little, still smiling at Beca.
"Thank you, I think. That's a good thing, right?"
"A very good thing. And I just wanted to let you know that, that it wasn't a trick to fool that jerk. I mean, it was a trick, but not just a trick." Chloe shook her head and continued. "I wanted to tell you this before but with all the music and the dancing and the drinking, it would've been too confusing. Not that this isn't confusing in general, I guess, right?'
"It is a little bit but I think I'm getting the gist of what you're saying." Beca looked down at their hands, then back up at Chloe, waiting for her to continue.
"Good. Because it's important to me that you know this, Beca." Chloe smiled and reached up to put her hand on Beca's cheek. "You're important to me." She leaned in and softly kissed the other girl again.
Beca returned the kiss, lingering in the ecstasy of the moment for several moments before breaking off. She smiled and reached out for Chloe's other hand. "You're important to me too, Chloe. But I... this is all kinda new to me."
"I totally understand." She nodded, turning to face Beca on the bed. "And I'm not trying to rush you or force you into anything either, despite what this might seem like."
"I've gotta admit, of all the times I imagined making out with someone in my bedroom I never imagined anything like this happening." She chuckled, looking down at their hands. "But... it's all a little too fast for me."
"It is moving a little quickly, yeah. I blame all those white Russians you forced me to drink." said Chloe with a wink. "Also it's partly my fault because, you know. I'm pretty confident about all of this."
"You should be." Beca replied with a smirk of her own, followed by another kiss. "I think, however, that it'd be for the best if we both got some sleep. It's been a long, crazy night, even if it's been mostly in a good way."
"Mmm, that's not a bad idea at all." Chloe agreed. "I'm pretty exhausted all right."
"You can stay here if you want, Mom won't be back until after lunch tomorrow." Beca let go of the other girl's hands to readjust herself on the bed, moving further up onto it and laying her head back the pillows. This time it was her who was patting the space beside her on the bed with a smile.
Chloe just nodded and did the same, sliding up next to Beca and cuddling in close to her. It didn't take either of them long to drift off to sleep in the warmth and comfort of each other's arms.
The next morning they had breakfast together before Beca dropped Chloe off at home. They both had a busy day ahead of them as it was Christmas Eve, and there was still some last minute shopping to do and other assorted errands. They both discussed the idea of getting each other Christmas presents and unanimously decided that what had already transpired was enough of a present for each of them, at least for this year. Plans were made for further dates, including one for New Year's Eve, and they would take it from there.
On Christmas morning, Beca was surprised by one gift in particular, which her mother handed to her and explained that Chloe had dropped it off later the night before. She'd told Beca's mother to keep it a surprise, so she had. Opening it, she discovered a David Guetta CD and a loofa, which brought a big smile to her face. The CD case had already been opened and inside there were some special hand written notes in the booklet by track 12, Titanium.
"What's that, honey?" asked her mother, squinting over at the package her daughter had just opened.
"Just my ladyjam." replied a grinning Beca.
"Your what, sweetheart?"
"Nothing, mom. Merry Christmas." she laughed, shaking her head as she stood up. Beca suddenly had the urge to take a shower.