When Cappie wakes up on Monday morning, Casey's staring at him, and he almost falls out of bed. "Casey! Jesus."
"You were making weird noises," Casey says, and he automatically reaches down to check the state of his dick, but she shakes her head. "Trust me, not sexy noises. Like you were having a bad dream."
"I was having a dream-" Cappie shakes his head, trying to collect his thoughts. He still feels stuck halfway between dreaming and being awake, and everything seems hazy. "I had a dream that I told Evan about us, and then he set up a prank that got Wade, Jeremy, and Ferret expelled."
Casey looks at him strangely. "Evan got your brothers expelled because you told him we were dating again?"
"Yeah, and- and I had to pretend to laugh at all his bad jokes. It was traumatizing."
Casey socks him in the shoulder, which wakes him up for real. "Come on, Cap. You never tell me about your dreams unless they're about, like, being a maverick space explorer who discovers a planet full of lonely girls just dying to have a threesome with the first guy who enters their solar system."
"Ah, yes, Planet Horny Bisexual. That was a dream worth retelling. This was more like a nightmare. There wasn't even any sex in it. Oh, wait. I think Evan ended up banging Rebecca, but it got kind of fuzzy toward the end of the dream."
"Rebecca?" Casey repeats, finally seeming to grasp the severity of the situation. "No. No. Rebecca can never have sex with Evan again. She would eat him alive."
"We're talking about the guy who paid off a guy to stay away from you, Case. And hit your brother with a pledge paddle. Evan is many things, but a delicate flower is not one of them. Or a comedian. Or a-"
"He's different now," Casey points out. "Or maybe I mean that he's the same, again. He's like freshman year Evan."
"That was hardly the point of the dream," Cappie says hastily, because Casey is right. Evan and Rebecca should definitely never have sex again. "It was a total fade-to-black, anyway. Thankfully. Look, I'm telling you, whatever version of Evan I have to tell, this is not going to go according to plan."
"Because of a dream you had." Casey rolls her eyes. "Okay, how did you tell him in the dream? Maybe that was the problem. Maybe you were like, 'Yo... um... dude, I'm tapping that sweet Cartwright ass now, so take that!'"
"What? I mean, you do have a sweet ass, don't get me wrong, but seriously, what?"
"I don't know! Boys are weird."
"Fair enough. Anyway, as I recall, what I said was, 'Let's think of it as bringing another member onto our team.' Your ass was not mentioned at all."
Casey stares at him. "Um, you realize dream you totally made it sound like some kind of weird threesome thing, right? Maybe that's why dream Evan freaked out. God, I can't believe I'm talking about your cracked out dream like it's a real thing."
"Okay, first of all, it totally did not sound like that. Second, you know I admire your dirty mind, but this is definitely an exception."
"I take it Evan Chambers is not a citizen of Planet Horny Bisexual?"
"No, it was pretty much just you and Rebecca, to be honest."
"Ugh. Right." Casey leans over to give him a quick kiss, and he slides his hand up the back of her tank top. Her skin is warm, and he wants to pull her on top of him and kiss her until they both miss their morning classes and have no reason to leave his room. "Listen, I'll come with you when you tell Evan tonight, and we'll come up with something better than you kind of propositioning him, okay? I promise it won't result in anyone getting expelled."
Cappie props himself up on his elbows and watches her slide out of bed and rummage for her jeans. It's stupid, but he's happy just looking at the way her tank top rides up around the curve of her hips. and listening to the exasperated breath she blows out when she can't find one of her socks.
Casey wrinkles her nose at him as he watches her wriggle into her jeans. "What?"
"Why are you staring at me like that?"
Cappie realizes he's grinning like a dumbass. "I'm just really happy."
"I'm going to sneak out your window now," Casey says, but before she does, she turns around and smiles back at him. "I'm really happy, too."
It's Casey's idea for Cappie to text Evan and tell him there's an Amphora emergency. And it's Casey's idea for him to sneak her into the lair so they can both be there to tell him. Cappie's a little fuzzy on who instigates next part, but he's totally willing to blame Casey for the fact that he's pressed up against the stone wall, her fingers resting lightly at the waistband of his boxers, when they hear the loud thunk above them.
"Evan," Cappie hisses, and Casey backs away so they can compose themselves. Casey's hair is messed up where Cappie's hands were tangled, and Cappie's belt is unbuckled.
"What was so urgent, an urnmergency?" Evan asks as he walks into the lair. Cappie's grateful for his less-than-graceful entrance, because walking in on him and Casey making out would have been the worst possible way for Evan to find out. Even worse than sports metaphors that, apparently, sound like come ons, if your name is Casey Cartwright and your mind is in the gutter.
"An urnmergency," Cappie repeats, forcing himself to laugh. "That's really-"
"No." Casey shakes her head. "It's not. Look, Evan, we have something to tell you, and we wanted you to know before anyone else did."
"What?" Evan looks somewhere between suspicious and terrified. "Case, you shouldn't even be here. We got in so much trouble last time we let you in here."
"This is important," Casey says, elbowing Cappie, and Cappie nods, adding, "We're back together."
"You and-" Evan says, like he thinks Cappie is talking about Lana or something, and then looks at Casey. "Oh. Oh."
Casey looks like she's trying not to smile, but she doesn't quite succeed, and Cappie can't help himself, either. It just makes him happy to even talk about. "We were just hoping, you know, that you'd be okay with this."
"Wait, why wouldn't I be okay with this?" Evan asks, and Cappie thinks about the night of the End of the World party, when Evan told him not to go after Casey and they spent the night sitting on the roof, shivering and telling stories from when they were kids. Before they knew Casey.
Casey says quickly, "No, of course. We just want to make sure everything's cool."
"Yeah, totally. It's not like I'm still- whatever." Evan looks between Casey and Cappie, as if he can't decide which one of them to approach first, then awkwardly hugs Casey and holds his fist out for Cappie to bump. "Uh, so I'll see you guys around?"
"Totally," Casey repeats, and after they watch him walk out of the lair, Casey turns to Cappie and makes a face.
"Yeah, so I'm not sure that went great," Cappie admits.
"Well, we did base our strategy on a dream you had last night."
"I really don't think you understand how awful the dream was."
"I'm just saying, last night I dreamt that Rebecca burned down the Gamma Psi house, and I'm not planning on taking any real life cues from that."
"Be honest. You kind of wish you could, right?"
Casey laughs. "Oh, you have no idea. But I think this will get less weird. I mean, I know it will. It's just going to take some time for all of us to adjust."
"I hope so."
"Trust me, Cap. It's like we get a do-over of freshman year. We get to do it all over again, but right this time, so we all get to stay friends. And we're three years wiser."
"Maybe you are," Cappie says, and she smiles at him.
"Let's just make sure we keep hanging out with him, okay? I don't want him to feel like we're bailing on him just because we're back together."
"I don't know, Case. I feel like I've got a busy schedule of doing absolutely nothing but staying in bed with you these next couple of weeks."
Casey looks around the empty room. "Well, I've got about twenty minutes, so-"
Cappie's already taking his off his pants.
Cappie is rarely surprised when Casey is right, but he was honestly expecting it to take quite a while before Evan was totally cool with the fact that Cappie and Casey are back together. Their friendship is still a little fragile, and it's not like Evan is known for being socially graceful. Instead, within a couple of days and the first hour of them all hanging out together again, everything seems completely normal.
Actually, it seems better than normal. It feels, like Casey had said, like freshman year all over again, right down to the part where he's actually going to class sometimes. Casey has to be in class during the day, and in the evenings, she has SongFest practice or Panhellenic meetings or study group, and Cappie has Amphora and the occasional KT meeting. On Thursdays, there are mixers, and there's cocktail every other Friday, which means unless the ZBZs and KTs are mixing, Cappie doesn't see Casey before one am.
Cappie's back on a sleep schedule that's somewhere in the vicinity of normal, and during the day, when Casey and Evan are busy and his brothers are all taking their afternoon naps, he finds himself going to Ancient Philosophy and Organic Chemistry for Non-Majors and Contemporary Music Study. Okay, so he never goes to the Principles of Civil Engineering, but he's pretty sure even the professor skips that class sometimes, too.
They spend most of their time together at night, just like when they would all come back from pledge meetings when they were freshman and meet up in Cappie and Evan's room. Sometimes it's just him and Casey, but more often than not Evan is there, too. It's not like they can hang out exactly like they used to, since Cappie and Evan are supposed to be sworn enemies and can't be seen in public, but they hang out in Cappie's room and watch movies and talk.
If they're not with Evan, he and Casey are all over each other, all the time. They fuck in his bed, and on his desk, and in her room when Ashleigh is in class, and late at night in one of the ZBZ showers, when all of her sisters were asleep. They make out in the library stacks, and Casey's car, and once, memorably, in Huck's golf cart when he runs off to write someone a ticket for biking too slowly. They have so much fucking morning sex, and afterward Cappie goes through the day with a sappy, dazed smile that he can't quite shake.
No matter how much sex they have, Cappie has this stupid, uncontrollable need to be touching Casey all the time. After two years of fuckups and near misses and pretending he wasn't still in love with her, the fact that they're actually dating again surprises him every day. It feels like if he breathes too hard, or maybe just looks away for a second, he's going to fuck it all up again somehow.
The first night in a long time that the ZBZs and the KTs both have clear social calendars is a Saturday, and it's also the first night that he and Casey get to go one a real date, now that everyone knows they're dating again. When Cappie swings by the ZBZ house to pick Casey up for their date, Rebecca lets him in.
"Hey," she says, looking a little surprised. "Oh. Right. I did hear that you and Casey got back on the horse. The horse of bad relationship decisions."
"Hey," Cappie says, frowning at her. "Rebecca, come on. I want you to be happy for us."
"I'm happy for you," she says flatly. "Actually, as long as you don't do gross cute stuff in front of me or ask me on double dates or anything, it's pretty cool."
"The double dates, I can promise. The gross cute stuff- well, I'll try my best."
"Good. And I rarely try to steal the same girl's boyfriend twice, so I think you guys should be fine."
"That's generous of you." Cappie checks out the empty foyer. "Were you hanging out down here in the hopes of hassling me if I showed up?"
"God, no. I'm waiting for Evan," she says.
"Ev- Chambers?" Cappie asks incredulously. "You're waiting for Chambers? I don't think I'm the one that has to worry about bad relationship decision horses!"
"Chill out. It's not a date. We're just hanging out."
"Good, because I thought- I mean, you would never date Chambers, would you?"
"God, no. Look, Evan was hot when he was all, ooh, I'm the president of Omega Chi, look at me being a douche when all I really want is someone to tie me up and tell me to beg for it, but now he's just all mopey."
"Rebecca!" Cappie yelps. "That wan't the question I was asking. That wasn't the question anyone was asking."
Rebecca shrugs. "I'm just saying, he's strictly in the friend zone. Why do you care?"
"Nothing, I just-" Cappie remembers he's supposed to hate Evan. "You know. Hate that douchemover so much that I don't want anyone to date him. Especially you, Bex."
Rebecca doesn't look entirely convinced, but she lets it pass without comment, and Cappie leans on the stairs as he waits for Casey. It's not that he would have really cared that much if Rebecca and Evan were dating, he thinks, because he's been over Rebecca for quite a while, but it's still a relief that they're not.
Even though Rebecca denied it, Cappie asks Evan, just to make sure, the next time Evan's hanging out with him and Casey. "Don't get me wrong," Evan says, glancing at Casey. "She's, uh, cool and all, but-"
"You mean hot," Casey says, and Cappie laughs. "You can say it. I know that's what you meant."
Evan shrugs. "Yeah. Fine, she's hot and all, but it's not going anywhere. I don't really think either of us want it to."
"That would just be weird," Casey says. "Too much history repeating itself."
"Well, you guys are back together. It wouldn't be that weird."
"No, it definitely would be," Cappie says.
"Well, don't worry about it," Evan says, and checks his watch. "Oh, shit, I have to get to meeting. Dude, don't you guys usually have your chapter meeting tonight, too?"
"Yeah, but Wade and Beaver just formed the Executive Committee to Bid Heath Farewell and Get Everyone Laid, and they've already decided that his going away party theme will be Dirty Doctors and Naughty Nurses. So everything Kappa Tau-related is pretty much under control."
"Were that the Omega Chis' problems so plebeian," Evan says ruefully, and laughs when Cappie slugs him.
Casey grabs Evan's wrist to check his watch. "Is it really almost eight? I'm going to be late to meet Ash for dinner." She blows Cappie a kiss, and in a matter of seconds, she's running out the door and Evan is sliding out the window. Cappie looks around his empty room and frowns. He had kind of forgotten Evan was supposed to come over tonight, and he'd been counting on getting some time alone with Casey. Actually, he had been counting on that for a couple of days, but there always seemed to be something- plans with Evan, Beaver's need for a bedtime story, Casey's sister Laura getting into a fistfight with Natalie from Gamma Psi in the quad- getting in the way.
If their plans had been with any dude but Evan, Cappie would have just canceled and told him it's not that Cappie didn't want to see him, it's that he wanted to fuck his girlfriend more. There's no way Cappie can say that to Evan; he and Casey are still walking on eggshells around him. They don't even kiss in front of him. Cappie doesn't blame Evan, because it's a decision that he and Casey made. Evan's feelings, and their friendship, are more important than being able to grope each other any time they want to. They're going to do better this time.
The other part of it, the part Cappie hasn't even told Casey, is that he's willing to sacrifice some of their alone time if it means he gets to stay friends with Evan. He would never blame Casey for the disintegration of his and Evan's friendship, because that's all on them, but Cappie didn't fully appreciate how much he missed Evan until the three of them starting hanging out again like this. He has a good time with Evan when it's just the two of them, but they always have the most fun when it's the three of them.
The next time Evan comes over, he falls on his head when he's climbing through the window, and glares at Cappie and Casey when they burst out laughing.
"Four for the landing," Casey says, giving him a thumbs down.
"Yeah, this whole sneaking in the window thing is not working," Evan grumbles. "I went to meeting with leaves in my hair the other day. I had to tell Trip that I'd picked up some gardening work on the side to help pay the bills. We need to find somewhere else to hang out."
"Where did you guys hang out before I cleverly exposed your lies?" Casey asks.
"You mean, before you almost got us kicked out of Amphora, and possibly offered as a human sacrifice?" Evan shrugs. "The lair, after meetings, and Cappie came and bugged me at work."
"We could always-"
"Not since Cappie dumped Lana. I don't really think she'd be too thrilled to have you guys hanging around."
Casey elbows Cappie. "Way to go, Cap."
Cappie flicks her ear, and she looks like she's about to retaliate in kind, but stops when she glances at Evan. Evan doesn't look pissed, exactly, but he doesn't look pleased, either. It's the same odd expression he gets when Cappie grabs Casey's hand, or when Casey leans over and messes up Cappie's hair.
"We do have the bar," Casey says, glancing sideways at Cappie, like she thinks he might be annoyed that she's telling Evan. Cappie's surprised to find that he isn't. He supposes since he and Casey are actually together again, the bar doesn't really hold that much significance.
"Please tell me you don't mean Gentleman's Choice," Evan says.
"Which one?" Cappie asks, because fucking with Evan is always a good time.
"It's not," Casey says. "Although it's so divey that you might be wishing for Gentlemen's Choice. We used to meet there when- well, we hang out there sometimes. No one else from school even knows about it."
"As long as there are no strippers, I'm cool."
Cappie shakes his head sadly. "Where's your sense of adventure, Evan? So like an Omega Chi."
"Needing to offer financial incentives to convince girls to get naked?" Evan replies. "Sounds like the KTs, for sure."
Evan actually ends up liking the bar a lot, which Cappie wasn't expecting, and they start spending a lot of time there. It's nice to be able to just sit and drink beer and talk shit without having to worry about running into anyone from school. The three of them have managed to collectively piss off an impressive amount of CRU Greeks, and even the people who don't hate them like to gossip about them.
The bar is a place where Casey can complain about how much she hates the Gamma Psis, and Evan can complain about Trip and Grant trying to screw up his presidency. Cappie doesn't have much to complain about, except the fact that he sometimes wakes up from naps on the couch to find Jeremy staring at him, but Casey and Evan are both fun to watch when they get worked up. Sometimes Evan talks about his parents, too, but only a little. Cappie's selfishly glad about that, because it's so hard to watch how upset they make Evan. When he was a kid, he sometimes used to wish his parents were more like Evan's, who were always so charming and understated and proper, and never talked about shit like star children and crystal energy, but he hasn't felt that way for a long fucking time.
It's only weird when they play pool, because Cappie associates it so strongly with fucking Casey when she was still dating Evan. When he looks at the table, he thinks about the walk back to his house and how hard they tried to stay a couple of feet apart from each other, so no one who saw them would know what was going on. When Evan tosses him a cue, Cappie thinks about Casey shoving him back onto his bed and climbing on top of him, her hands fisted in his shirt while he grabbed her ass and pulled her body down against his. When Casey breaks, he thinks of how dirty, and how fucking good, it felt that she was fucking him when she was supposed to be with Evan.
Cappie tries not to think about it when Evan's right there with the two of them, cracking extremely unfunny jokes about sticks and balls. Sometimes, though, when he looks at Casey and Evan standing next to each other, he remembers saying to Casey, as she slid down on his dick, "So, Case, I take it you're here because I'm better at this than Evan?" He doesn't know where that came from, exactly; Casey's usually the competitive one. Casey just shook her head at him and told him it wasn't about that. Cappie doesn't know why he has such a clear memory of that. He was trashed that night, and they always talk a lot during sex. But for some reason, that sticks out.
One night, Evan comes over to watch Zombieland with them, and he falls asleep halfway through.
"Aw, is he really asleep?" Casey asks, and laughs. "I don't understand how he can sleep through this movie."
"Should we wake him up?"
"But he looks so peaceful."
"And you look so hot," Cappie says meaningfully. It's probably too dark for her to see him wiggling his eyebrows, but he does it anyway, just in case. "I feel like it's been forever since we-"
"I know," Casey says fervently. "God, with SongFest and Panhellenic and everything that's been going on lately, it's like we never get any time alone."
"So let's wake him up so he can leave."
"Or," Casey says, and shoves her hand down his pants.
"Case," Cappie hisses. It's hard to sound authoritative and firm when you're whispering. Also, when your girlfriend has her hand down your pants.
"What?" Casey wraps her other hand around the back of his neck, her nails digging just a little, like it could be unintentional, and Cappie bites his lip. That's dirty pool.
"Uh, in case you had a brain aneurysm in the last five minutes, Evan is right there."
Casey digs her nails harder, which is definitely intentional. "So? It's not really any different than that time at the movies. Or when we were stuck in traffic on the way to the mall. And I'm pretty sure I remember hearing something about you, Rebecca, a trench coat, and a library..."
If Cappie wasn't already hard, just the mention of one of those times would have gotten him halfway there. Fuck, he really needs to stop being so blatantly obvious about what gets him off the hardest. For one thing, he doesn't like to discriminate, especially against sex acts. And if he ever meets a sexy spy, she'll have him handcuffed to a bed and spilling secrets in a matter of minutes. "It is different," Cappie insists quietly. "It's Evan. He's going to freak if he wakes up and we're-"
"So be quiet." Casey flicks open the button of his jeans and drags down his zipper. It sounds way too loud in the quiet room, and Cappie holds his breath, but he doesn't hear Evan stir. "I notice you're not saying that you're not into it."
Well, he'd be lying, and really obviously, at that. Cappie's into it; he's always into shit like this. He's into how magnified every little sound seems when you're trying desperately to be quiet and how he can hear the little hitches in Casey's breath that he usually misses. He's into the way he's going to have to bite her shoulder to keep from making noise, and the way she's doing to shake against him as she tries to stay quiet, too. The whole time she's jerking him off, he's going to feel like there's an electric current humming underneath his skin, this possibility that at any second they could get a little too loud and get caught. It's like constantly stumbling around the edge of something but never quite getting here, and yeah, Cappie is so into it.
"Spit," Casey whispers, holding up the hand that was on his dick, and Cappie obliges.
It's hotter, somehow, when it's Evan, instead of strangers watching a movie or sitting in traffic. It's like they're on the edge of something even worse, or maybe better. He knows Evan would absolutely flip his shit if he woke up. Casey's still got her hand on the back of his neck, so he can't turn around to make sure Evan's still asleep. All Cappie can do is hope that Evan stays asleep while Casey jerks Cappie off and he slides his hand up her shirt and pinches one of her nipples and they both try to muffle the noise they're making against each other's skin. It takes, like, five minutes for Cappie to come, listening to Casey's sharp intakes of breath and feeling her nipple go hard between his fingers, knowing Evan's right there behind them. It would almost be embarrassing if it wasn't so fucking hot.
"Your turn," Cappie says against Casey's ear, once he can think again, and she shakes her head.
"I want you to eat me out," she murmurs. "That would wake him up. Right now I just want-" She reaches for him, and for a second, Cappie thinks she means that she wants to cuddle, but then he realizes she's trying to wipe off her hand, which he just came all over, on his shirt.
"Come on, there are Kleenex right there- Case-"
"Just let me wipe your jizz on you," Casey whispers furiously, and they both crack up. "You are the worst boyfriend!"
Cappie gives in and takes his shirt off entirely, and she wipes her hand off and tosses it somewhere near his laundry basket. His laundry basket is really just a pile of his dirty clothes that stretches from his bed halfway to his door, so it's hard to miss. "The things I do for you, Cartwright. Jesus."
Cappie means to stay up until Evan wakes up and goes home, so he can go down on Casey, but his bed is comfortable, and Casey is warm against his side. He closes his eyes for a second, and when he opens them, the'res sun streaming brightly through his window. Cappie is deeply disoriented for a second, trying to figure out where he is, and why there's someone on either side of them. Then he looks over Casey's head at his clock and realizes that it's almost noon.
"Hey," he whispers to Casey, and she blinks sleepily at him. "Hey, Case. Wake up."
"Your pants are unzipped," she says, her voice a little hoarse, and she reaches up to rub at her eyes. "What- oh."
Cappie remembers everything at once, and his hands shake a little as he zips and buttons his jeans. Did they really- fuck. He rolls over to look at Evan, who's still sleeping, his mouth hanging open. He starts to stir in a couple of minutes, though, and Cappie hastily yanks on the shirt that Casey tosses his way. It's dirty, but at least there's no jizz on it.
"Hey," Evan mumbles sleepily. "What am I doing here?"
Casey sits down on the bed next to him. "You feel asleep. We all fell asleep." Evan sits up, running his hand over the top of his head, and Cappie is surprised by how wrecked he looks. They all slept for ten hours, but Evan still looks exhausted, especially with the sunlight throwing the circles under his eyes and the downturn of his mouth into stark relief.
"He's still cool with us, right?" Cappie says doubtfully, after Evan's safely sneaking out of the KT yard and back to his own house. "He looked like shit, Case."
"He has a lot going on at Omega Chi," Casey says. "You know it's not really going well for him there right now. I'm pretty sure it's about that."
"Yeah." Cappie's reminded all the time that he made the right choice in joining Kappa Tau. He's always thought that Evan had to feel that way about Omega Chi, too -- those moments of perfect clarity where you just intuitively know that you're where you're supposed to be - even if Evan's version involved a lot more ties, summers in the Hamptons, and guys unironically nicknamed "Trip" and "Biff." He's not that sure anymore, though. "I wish we could do something about it."
"Right, a Kappa Tau getting involved would definitely make it better. And, uh, hey, I think you owe me something from last night," Casey says, grinning, and he puts Evan's Omega Chi troubles out of his mind and reaches for her.
At SongFest, two days later, the Omega Chis set up camp about thirty feet away from the KTs, and Cappie scans the clusters of polo-shirted douches for Evan. He finally spots him talking to that guy Marco, and when Evan looks up from their conversation, Cappie waves as discreetly as he can. Evan waves back, then remembers he's supposed to hate Cappie, and glares exaggeratedly.
Cappie's glad that Casey's the only one that pays enough attention to both of them to pick up on the fact that they're really, really bad at this whole pretending to hate each other thing. He's not sure that if anyone was watching, they'd realize what was going on, but it definitely would not seem like the kind of interaction that humans are supposed to have. Cappie makes sure not to look over at Evan again, just in case someone else is paying attention, but he can hear Evan cheering when the ZBZs take the stage. It's nice.
The ZBZs win SongFest, and Cappie and Casey have such good sex that night. He remembers being 19, when they first discovered that reverse cowgirl existed, and thinking that there was no way it could get better than that, because that shit was the upper limit on sex. Now he's 22, and he has Casey bent over his desk, in front of his mirror. She's laughing and telling him how good his dick feels, and he can't believe how wrong he was.
"Good?" Casey asks, bracing herself up on her elbows so she can glance back over her shoulder at him. Her hair is stuck to her forehead, and her mouth is shiny. Cappie wants to fuck her forever.
"Yeah, fuck- yeah."
"So you're not thinking about Evan watching?"
Cappie's grabbing her ass, fingers pressing into her skin, and he's so into the way that she's sliding back onto his dick that it takes him a second to register what she's just said. "No, what the-"
"Liar," Casey says, and she sounds sweet and breathless. "You can't stop watching us in the mirror. You're so obviously thinking about what we would look like to someone else."
Cappie was thinking about that, but mostly abstractly, and he's thrown by the fact that Casey's mind immediately went to Evan. "Jesus, Casey."
"You were so into it," Casey says, and when Cappie pulls out, she turns around and hops up on the desk so she can look at him. There's a red line across her skin, from where the desk was digging in, and Cappie runs his fingers over it, almost automatically. "You were so into it when Evan was right there."
Cappie doesn't want to talk about this, because if he tells her he wasn't, he would be lying. His stomach is jumping a little, just thinking about it, how hot it was that Casey was jerking him off when Evan could wake up and look over at any second. So he kisses Casey instead, and she spreads her legs, and they start fucking again.
They both get off like that, fucking face to face, and neither of them say anything else about it, but Cappie knows they're both thinking about Evan watching.
Afterward, when they're spooning in bed, her head resting on his arm, he says, "Hey, Case. You know- I mean, you know it's not about Evan, right? It's not like I get off on the idea of rubbing his face in the fact that we're fucking or something."
"I know you're an exhibitionist," Casey says sleepily, rubbing her face against his arm, and Cappie kisses the top of her head. "People who've never even spoken to you can figure out that you're an exhibitionist."
That's not really what Cappie was trying to clarify, but he's tired, and he's not entirely sure that if this conversation keeps going, he's going to be able to clear anything up. So instead he says, "Yeah, okay," and falls asleep holding her.
Cappie has a hard time meeting Evan's eye at their next Amphora meeting. He's not sure that the Amphora leadership would be cool with him calling Evan his brother after what he and Casey talked about last night. He's not sure most governments would be cool with it. He bolts as soon as the meeting ends, waving Evan off with a shitty excuse about having to take Ferrett to the doctor, but it doesn't end up buying him much time, because Evan comes over to hang out with Cappie and Casey the next night.
As soon as Evan leaves, Casey pounces on Cappie, and they make out on his bed. It's warm from where Evan was sitting, and Cappie knows Casey notices, too, because she smirks at him. "Case," he says warningly, and then stops, because he doesn't know what to say. He knows she would never bring it up if he said he didn't want to talk about it, but that's not exactly what Cappie wants. That's actually not anywhere close to what Cappie wants.
Casey looks at him levelly, waiting for him to continue, and when he doesn't she says, "Hey, this isn't-"
"What? Weird? Creepy? Kind of gay? Because I'm pretty sure it's all three." It doesn't sound as funny as he would like when he says it out loud.
Casey laughs, pushing herself up to her knees so she straddle Cappie's lap, and Cappie automatically reaches for her hips, touching the little strip of skin where her shirt doesn't quite meet the top of her skirt. "Okay, yeah, you have a point. But it's not like you usually have a problem with being any of those things. I mean, come on, if going down on me while I was dressed as Abraham Lincoln for that pledge play freshman year wasn't both kind of gay and really weird, I don't know what is."
"More like Babe-raham Lincoln, am I right?" And seriously, she had been wearing a really tight vest and no bra, okay? The beard was a little strange, but Cappie is nothing if not able to adapt.
"That was, like, Evan-level," Casey says, shaking her head, and reaches for his belt. It takes her a second to realize what she said, and when she does, she laughs again, but it sounds a little more forced this time. "Um, probably not the best time to make that comparison."
Cappie catches her wrist with his hand, swallowing hard. She's taller than him like this, when she's kneeling and he's leaning back against the wall, and it's weird to look up at her. "Hey, I'm just saying. I don't want this to be some, like, weird thing you're just playing along with to humor me."
"Oh, Cap. I did that with the whole German tourist roleplaying thing, and that was definitely weirder. Trust me. And anyway, it's not like." Casey bites her lip. "It's not something I'm just playing along with, okay?"
She grabs his hand and slides it up her skirt, and Cappie looks up at her as his fingers brush thin, damp fabric. "Oh," Cappie says slowly. "Oh, fuck, you're so wet." He pushes her underwear aside and slides one finger up her slit, slowly.
Casey's hair falls over their faces like a curtain as she leans over him, bracing her hand against the wall. The V-neck of her shirt is slipping low, and Cappie yanks at it with his free hand. "I can't stop thinking about it," she says, inhaling sharply as Cappie bites her nipple through stupid scratchy lace of her bra. "Fuck, Cap, you have no idea. I thought about him watching you finger me, how he'd keep looking away and trying not to stare at your fingers, how he'd be able to see how wet I was-"
Cappie likes fingering her, really fucking likes going down on her, but all he wants to do is rip off her skirt and rub the head of his dick against her wet pussy and let her slide slowly down on his dick so he can bury his face in her tits and dig his nails into her hips and fuck her. "Case," he says desperately, and she twists one of her hands in his hair, pulling his face into her tits.
Cappie means to take off his belt, but then Casey says, "He'd be into it, you know. He used to like to watch me get myself off," and Cappie gives up entirely and grabs her hips so he can just rub up against her through his jeans. It's a terrible angle, and it can't be doing much for her, but she just tightens her hand in his hair and keeps talking. "It was so hot, how much he liked it. He liked it when I was loud- I was always kind of worried that someone might hear, because I was so loud, but-"
"Case," Cappie manages weakly, and then he's coming.
The thing is, Cappie's usually good at separating his fantasy life from reality. Just because he liked it when Rebecca used to dress up as a sexy schoolmarm and threatened to whack him with a ruler if he didn't answer her questions correctly doesn't mean he wants to fuck any of his professors. Well, okay, he might have had a couple of extremely detailed and specific fantasies about his and Casey's women's studies professor, but that barely counts. He knows that there doesn't have to be a connection between Evan, he and Casey's best friend, and Evan, the guy they talk about watching them fuck.
Still, more than once, not while he and Casey are fucking, but afterward, Cappie gets the distinct feeling that they shouldn't be doing this. They shouldn't be talking about Evan like this. Cappie doesn't put a high premium on having a normal sex life, but this goes beyond costumes and roleplaying and that one time with the bear suit into something that so dirty that he's almost a little freaked out by how hard they both get off on it.
It's not just that he knows, in the abstract, that Casey and Evan had pretty fucking hot sex when they were dating. It's that he can glance sideways at Evan during Amphora meetings and think, his stomach dropping, I know what gets you off. He knows Evan likes watching other people get off. He knows Evan likes having his hands pinned above his head and his neck bitten. He knows Evan likes nails scratching his stomach and digging into his shoulders.
Cappie doesn't think he and Casey should be talking about that kind of shit, but he doesn't want to stop, either.
It gets better, or maybe worse, the longer it goes on and the more Cappie, Casey, and Evan hang out. It's deeply weird, but it starts to feel normal for Cappie to know all that about Evan, like an extension of the fact that they both dated Casey. It starts to feel okay.
Casey and Cappie have another date on Saturday. The fact that they're both so busy that they have to schedule dates to get time alone together feels uncomfortably adult, but there's something kind of awesome about getting dressed up and ready to go out, like he's going to a two-person costume party.
Casey opens the door to the ZBZ house when he knocks, and she's wearing something black that may or may not qualify as a dress. There are cut-outs on the sides, and thin straps, and all Cappie can see is her skin. "God, Case," he breathes.
She smirks. "So does that mean if I asked you if you wanted to skip dinner and just go back to your place and-"
Yeah, Cappie likes dates, but he likes having sex with Casey a lot more. "Uh, yes. How is that even a question?"
"You're so easy," Casey says, but it doesn't exactly sound like a complaint. She keeps her hand on his thigh on the short drive back to his house, and he runs his finger along one of the straps of her dress after he parks, and they make out in his car until Casey pulls away, touching her mouth almost absently.
"Cap, you know what you have in your room? A bed."
"God, I love the way you think," Cappie says. He sounds dreamy. He sounds like a dreamy fucking thirteen-year-old with a crush. That's a pretty accurate explanation of how he feels around Casey, though, so he doesn't worry about it too much.
They hold hands as they walk up the stairs, and Cappie barely stops to shut his door and flip on his overhead light before he reaches for her.
"Evan?" Casey says, stepping away from him, and Cappie says, "Uh, no, Cappie," just as he realizes that Evan's sitting on his bed. Cappie feels like he just walked into their freshman dorm, with Evan waiting for the two of them to get back so they could get stoned and watch Gilmore Girls and talk about whether or not it would ruin the show if Luke and Lorelai actually did it. It's a total mindfuck.
"What are you doing here?" For a second, Cappie thinks they must have made plans with Evan and forgotten about them or something, because his presence is otherwise inexplicable.
"I needed to- oh, hey, you guys are on a date, aren't you?" It seems like Evan's at least making an attempt not to gape at Casey, but it's kind of an impossible task. Cappie doesn't blame him, but he does slide his arm around Casey's waist and pull her into him. "I can just-"
Evan looks like shit. There are the ever-present dark circles under his eyes, giving his whole face a bruised appearance, and his shoulders are slumped miserably. "Hey, man, what's wrong?"
"It's my mom's birthday," Evan says. "It's her birthday, and she won't call me back."
"Oh, Evan," Casey says, and sits down next to him on the bed. She touches his shoulder gently. "Do you want to talk about it?"
"No," Evan says immediately. "Is that weird? I came all the way here and climbed in your window, and I interrupted your date, but I don't really want to talk about it."
"It's not weird," Cappie says. "I think it means you want to get drunk."
"Is that what it means?" Casey asks sarcastically, but Evan nods.
"Yeah. Let's- yeah."
They go to their bar, and they don't talk about Evan's mom. They talk about how one of Evan's professors pioneered the theory that the world is safer when every country that wants them has many nukes as they feel like, and about how the Gamma Psi that runs Panhellenic gave Casey her own clipboard, and about how the admissions officer at the Harvard Medical School told Heath that he was one of the best applicants he'd ever seen.
Cappie thinks that maybe once they've had a couple of drinks, Evan will want to start talking about his mom, but it doesn't happen. He just wants to drink. That's okay, because Cappie and Casey are champion drinkers, and there are two-for-one shots until midnight. Cappie keeps waiting for Evan to hit the point where he's just so wasted that, in a classic repressed WASP move, he completely freaks out and unloads years' worth of feelings about his parents. By the time last call rolls around, Evan has lost three games of pool, had ten shots of tequila, and tried to hug the bartender, but he still hasn't said shit about his mom.
When they leave the bar, it's cold out, for once. It's freezing, actually, and even being a little drunk isn't really helping, so Cappie grabs Casey, and Evan latches onto her other side. Why are girls always so warm? It's like their boobs give them special powers. Cappie tries to run this theory by Evan and Casey, but it comes out more like, "God, boobs are awesome."
"I know, right?" Evan says reverently, and Casey almost falls over, she's laughing so hard. Okay, they're more than a little drunk. Walking is hard. Climbing the tree to get into Cappie's room when they finally make it back to the KT house is even harder.
Casey kicks her heels off the second they get inside Cappie's room, and falls backward onto his bed. "Thank God. I only wore these because we were-" Just going to come back here and fuck, Cappie finishes in his head, and then checks to see if Evan's listening. He's not; he's spinning slowly in a circle. Cappie flops down on his bed next to Casey, and watches Evan make himself dizzy.
"Wait," Evan says finally. "What the fuck am I doing here, you guys? I need to go home."
Casey shakes her head. "You're going to fall out the window if you try to go home."
"Just crash here," Cappie offers, and rolls over so he can look at Casey. He feels the bed dip underneath Evan's weight, but he doesn't look over. Casey's dress is riding up around her thighs, and he wants to touch her. He slips his hands between her thighs, wondering if Evan will even notice, and she turns toward him so they can kiss. It just lasts a second, and Cappie's not even sure Evan notices, so he does it again.
"Hey, you guys," Evan says, a little desperately. "This is like- don't do this again. Come on."
Casey pushes Cappie off her and stares at Evan. "Again?"
"What do you mean, again?"
"I mean-" Evan starts, and flushes. "I know you guys were hooking up the night I feel asleep here, okay?"
Cappie's stomach bottoms out, like he's at the top of a rollercoaster, waiting for the first fall. He expects Evan to get pissed, or annoyed, or upset- anything, but Evan just looks at them, his cheeks red.
"Huh," Casey says thoughtfully, and Cappie realizes his hand is still between her thighs. "You were awake?"
"I woke up," Evan corrects her. "Case, come on, this sucks. You guys can't just-"
"Did you like it?" Casey asks, and Cappie and Evan say, "What?" at the same time, their voices overlapping.
Evan doesn't answer, which is pretty much an answer in and of itself, and Cappie says, "Oh. Oh."
"Cappie gets off on people watching him," Casey explains, and Evan looks away for a second. Cappie's glad. He's not sure he can look Evan in the eye right now. "Like, right now. He'd be totally into you watching right now."
"Okay," Evan says slowly, and his voice sounds rusty. It takes Cappie a little while to figure out what that means- what they're about to do.
Casey's not wearing a bra, and Cappie groans when he pulls her dress over her head and takes in the way she looks: her nipples already hard, the curve of her tits, her stomach and hips, black panties, bare legs. Cappie doesn't look over at Evan, but he knows that Evan is looking at her, too. Cappie bends down over her and cups one of her breasts, sucks her nipple into his mouth, and she exhales sharply like she had forgotten to breathe for a minute.
He thinks about eating her out, taking her underwear off and pulling her legs over his shoulders and burying his face between her legs while Evan sits two feet away and watches them. When he starts to move down Casey's body, she grabs his hair, and he looks up at her.
"I want you to fuck me," she says, and her voice isn't loud, but it's loud enough. Cappie hears Evan suck in a breath. Cappie pushes himself up to his knees and starts stripping off his clothes, methodically. It's not sexy, but it feels that way with Evan watching. Cappie had always thought the possibility of someone watching was what got him off, but it turns out the reality of it is even more insane. It's like everything about sex gets cranked up to another level.
"There are condoms in the drawer," Cappie says, and Evan reaches over and grabs one. Their fingers brush when he hands it to Cappie. Evan's hand is shaking a little. He's hard, too. Cappie knew, in theory, that Evan would get off on this, but actually seeing it is different. This is different.
Cappie is acutely aware of Evan watching him as rolls the condom on his dick. When Casey slides down on his dick, he's feeling her, but he's looking at Evan, and Evan is looking at them. "Oh," Casey says breathlessly. "Fuck, you feel good."
Cappie cups her tits in his hands and rubs her nipples with his thumbs. They look good, he thinks. They look hot. Reverse cowgirl is hot, especially with the insane curve of Casey's hips and the way her tits bounce. Evan probably thinks they look hot.
"Come here," Casey says impatiently, and Cappie is confused for a second, until he realizes she's talking to Evan. Evan looks stupid, looks surprised, but he crawls over, and even though he's not anywhere close to touching Cappie, Cappie's skin is burning. Casey grabs Evan's shirt, twisting her fingers in the fabric, and Evan falls forward a little.
Cappie's watching all of this- he couldn't look away, even if he wanted to- and yet he's still surprised when Casey kisses Evan. This wasn't something they ever talked about, but God, it's so hot. Casey's still grabbing his shirt, and Evan's cupping her face in his hands, his fingers thick and huge along the delicate lines of her cheekbones. Cappie can hear the quiet, wet, sloppy noises their mouths are making, and if Casey leaned back at all, Evan's hands would be touching Cappie's chest.
Casey turns her head back against Cappie's chest for a second after she and Evan break apart, but then she says, "I'm going to jerk you off now, Evan," and Cappie can't quite meet Evan's eyes, but he doesn't look away, either.
It takes Cappie longer to come that he's expecting; he's pretty drunk. The whole thing feels endless and suspended: the way Evan's biting his lip like he doesn't want make noise, how Casey feels around him, the way Casey's hand looks on Evan's dick. Casey's tongue poking sweetly out between her teeth as she watches Evan. The strangled noise Evan makes when he comes all over Casey's stomach. The way Casey tilts her head up at Cappie and says, "Your turn, now," and Cappie finally looks at Evan and Evan finally looks at Cappie and they kiss, slowly, both of them wrapped around Casey.
It feels right.
Cappie wakes up slowly. His mouth tastes like ass, and he has that distinct, heavy feeling in his stomach that something went down last night, even though he's not sure what it was. There's no one in bed next to him. Usually when shit goes down, it involves waking up next to someone.
He rolls over, rubbing his eyes, and sees Casey sitting at his desk, wearing one of his T-shirts, and it hits him like a train. "Case," he croaks, and she gets up and comes over to sit on the bed next to him. "What the fuck, where's Evan?"
"He left," she says. "I woke up, like, an hour ago, and he was gone."
"Shit. Shit. Why didn't you wake me up?" Cappie's head spins as he sits up. Fuck, he didn't think he'd been that drunk last night.
"I didn't know what I wanted to say to you." It's a very honest answer, and Cappie loves that about her. He'd always thought, if he had a threesome, he and the two girls would wake up the next morning and laugh about it. He has a mental list of witticisms prepared for the occasion, just in case.
Cappie had thought about it a lot, and it never involved feeling like this. There is nothing about this that makes him want to laugh. He wants Evan to be here, so it's not just Casey and Cappie looking at each other like something is irreparably fucked up. He wants Evan to be here, so it doesn't even feel like anything is irreparably fucked up. "I can't believe this," Cappie says. "Seriously, Case, what the fuck did we just do?"
"It was good, right?" Casey asks. "I mean, kind of drunk and awkward, but it was really good."
"Yeah." Cappie feels his cheeks heat up a little as he thinks about it. Fuck, he hasn't blushed about anything related to sex since he was eight and Trisha Hunt told him what his parents really meant when they said babies were made by "making love and becoming one with the earth." Then she'd punched him in the arm and called him a goober. If Cappie learned anything during his brief stint as a psych major, it was that that one conversation probably created the template for every single romantic interaction he would have for the rest of his life. "It was really fucking good."
"He just left," she says again, resting her chin in her palm. "Jesus Christ."
Cappie doesn't quite know what else there is to say about it. Finally he asks, "So did you figure out what you wanted to say to me?"
Casey nods. "Yeah. Yeah, I wanted to say, I think when we said that we were going to get it right this time, because we're three years wiser, that was how. That was how we're supposed to get it right. With Evan."
She looks like she's holding her breath. Cappie- god, Cappie's not that guy, the one that's so shitty and unreasonable that his girlfriend has to get freaked out about suggesting something to him. Granted, Casey's suggesting something that doesn't even usually happen in American porn, but Cappie's always liked European porn better, anyway. "This is crazy, Case. This is straight-up European porn crazy."
Casey looks like she's about to ask him to expand on that, but she changes her mind. "You know what? I don't even want to know. Wait, what was it that Egyptian Joe always used to say about stuff like this?"
"'Open your mind, open your heart, and then open your legs,'" Cappie recites automatically. "And you know I love my big bro, but the average girl he tried that line on responded with something that left him requiring stitches."
"It's cute that you still think of me as an average girl, when I'm actually the first person in the history of, like, ever to find the top secret Amphora lair," Casey says, and she smiles as she says it, but it only lasts for a second before she looks serious again. "We're so good together, Cap, the three of us. You know we always do better when we're all together."
Casey's right. Cappie thinks about the three of them hanging out in his room freshman year, laughing so hard that Evan fell off the bed, and Casey tracking Evan and Cappie down at Amphora, and the momentary lightness he felt when he looked over and saw Casey and Evan next to him in bed. "Case-"
"I know this is weird," she says in a hurry, like she still doesn't think he's ready to listen, and Cappie makes up his mind.
"What isn't?" he asks. "Seriously, Evan and I are in a secret society. You're related to Spitter. People actually still watch One Tree Hill. This is weird, yeah, but these are strange times."
Cappie leans back, against the wall,and Casey curls up next to him, resting her head on his shoulder. She feels so perfectly familiar against him that it makes Cappie's heart hurt a little. "Yeah, One Tree Hill really sucks," she says.
"And we do always do better when we're all together," Cappie says. "So how do we get him to believe that?"
"I haven't come up with that part of the plan yet," Casey admits. "But that Egyptian Joe thing was good, right?"
"Yeah, totally. It's the first time using that line hasn't ended with a trip to the hospital and blood all over Joe's favorite poncho."
Casey laughs, and Cappie feels okay for the first time since waking up.
Cappie texts Evan that there's another Amphora-related emergency, but he doesn't reply, or show up to the lair. Cappie and Casey wait for an hour and a half. He doesn't even show up to their actual Amphora meeting that night.
"Where's Brother Chambers?" Jenna asks Cappie suspiciously.
"I'm not his keeper," Cappie snaps, and Jenna looks at him like she's contemplating human sacrifice. It's not a good look. Cappie's used to her turning it on him and Evan at the same time, which makes it a little less scary, but the full force of it is really awful.
Actually, the entire meeting is awful. Cappie didn't realize how much he relied on Evan to make the pomp and circumstance of Amphora enjoyable until Evan wasn't there. Cappie almost falls asleep, then gets chewed out by Jenna, texts Evan again, and gets chewed out for bringing an electronic device into the sacred lair, too.
Cappie goes straight to ZBZ after the meeting. He calls Evan twice on the walk over, but Evan doesn't pick up. When Casey lets him into the house, the look on her face is enough to let him know that Evan hasn't called her, either.
"Fuck," Cappie says, and Casey takes his hand and leads him straight up to her room.
When she says, "Hey, Cappie's going to stay here tonight," Ashleigh agrees right away. Cappie wonders what Casey told her about last night, and then decides he doesn't really care. It's not like Ashleigh is going to tell anyone. It's not like anyone would even believe her if she did.
"This sucks," Casey whispers when Ashleigh goes to the bathroom to brush her teeth. "How are we supposed to tell him what an idiot he's being if he won't even talk to us?"
"Maybe he just needs some time," Cappie offers lamely, but he doesn't really believe it, and neither does Casey.
Evan still isn't answering their calls and texts on Monday, and Cappie gets up at 8 am to try to intercept him on his way to his Business and Law class. He hasn't seen what 8 am looks like since the last time the KTs had an all-night rager. But Evan doesn't show, and that's Cappie stops pretending that this isn't some serious shit. Evan would never miss a Business and Law class. It's two hours a week of talking about how living under complete economic deregulation would feel even better than getting your dick sucked. Omega Chis live for that shit.
Evan doesn't call back on Tuesday, or Wednesday, or Thursday, and when Casey goes by the Omega Chi house to try to talk to him, Trip tells her he's not home. Cappie and Casey spend every night that week together, but they only have sex once, and they're both very obviously preoccupied. When Cappie's going down on her, wrapped up in how fucking good she tastes and how normal it feels, she starts to say, "I wish-" and then cuts herself off. Cappie knows what she was going to say. He knows how she feels.
Cappie doesn't know when he got so used to the idea of Evan in bed alongside him and Casey, but it's throwing him off that Evan isn't there. It's throwing him off way more than the idea of Evan being there in the first place ever did.
Friday is Heath's Bon Voyage party, and Evan still hasn't answered any of their calls or texts. Cappie swings by the Omega Chi house on the way to acquire his costume, but there's no sign of Evan. Cappie entertains a brief fantasy of breaking a window, climbing in, and walking up to Evan's room to punch him in the stomach, but decides against it on the grounds that Casey will probably refuse to bail him out of jail and he'll have to call Spitter. He doesn't know how he would explain that to Spitter. He doesn't know how he would explain it to anyone.
Cappie spends the first hour of the party in his room, lying on his bed and waiting for Casey to show up. He doesn't know what to do with this kind of ennui. Whenever he used to get upset about Casey dating Evan, he would just drag Beaver and Wade to Gentleman's Choice, or maybe make out with with the first girl that made fun of his name when he introduced himself at a party. Neither of those seem like particularly great options right now, and anyway, they never really helped that much to begin with.
"It's me!" Casey yells, when he doesn't immediately get up to answer the knocking at his door, and Cappie opens the door to find her standing there in extremely high heels and an extremely short dress with a red cross on it.
"Hello, nurse," Cappie says appreciatively.
"Hello... escaped Alzheimer's patient?" Casey guesses, looking his hospital gown up and down. "Don't tell me you don't own scrubs."
"Yeah, but every guy here is going to be wearing scrubs. Besides, I didn't buy this. Oh, no, I had to fake dehydration this morning and let the Nurse Ratched of the CRU Health Center stick about 87 needles in me to get this baby. That takes a certain level of skill."
"Or a certain level of insanity," Casey mutters, but she smiles as she tilts her head up and kisses him. He loves when she wears heels and he barely has to lean down to kiss her. "Oh, god, is your ass hanging out?"
"I'm wearing boxers!"
By the time they make their way downstairs, the party is already a certifiable rager. The beer is flowing freely, there's so little room to stand that girls are squished all up on each other, Wade's running around the backyard with the beer bong, and Rusty is giving Jordan and one of her friends a play-by-play of Heath's contributions to KT history. To her credit, Jordan's looks like she's trying hard to appear interested, but her friend looks bored as hell. Cappie grabs Ben Bennett and points him in Jordan's friend's direction, then makes his way over to one of the kegs to get beer for him and Casey.
When he manages to get back to Casey, she's checking her phone, and Cappie's heart jumps a little, in spite of himself. "Did he-"
Casey shakes her head. "No, nothing. I'm starting to get really worried. Do you think something happened to him?"
"I'm sure all the Omega Chis would be wearing their special black mourning polo shirts if that was the case," Cappie says, and immediately feels shitty about it. "God, Case. I'm sorry. I'm just really pissed at him."
"Me, too. I'm so mad at him, and I'm so worried about him."
"Yeah." There's not much else they can say about it in a house full of people, and anyway, it's a party. They watch Heath tell a dark-haired Theta Pi that he's going to be a real life McDreamy, and Betsy stumble around with a needle and a handle of vodka, which can only end in tears, and possibly hepatitis. Laura corners Casey to talk about "those Panhellenic bitches," and Cappie jerks his head toward the front door to tell Casey he's going to head out to the front yard for some air. She nods.
Calvin is making a beeline through the front door just as Cappie's about to walk through it, and Cappie nods at him. Behind Calvin is Evan, hands shoved in his pockets. It's deeply weird for Cappie to see him just standing on the KT doorstep, like it's no big deal for him to be there in his stupid khakis with no leaves in his hair or scratches on his palm from the tree outside Cappie's window.
"Oh, look, it's Evan Lamebers," Cappie says angrily, stepping outside. He wants to punch Evan so badly, but his stomach is also doing something that is suspiciously similar to the way he used to get all nervous when he and Casey first started going out and she would show up at his dorm to hang out. "You realize Casey and I have called you about six hundred times in the last week, right? And that you're not wearing a costume? I don't even know which one is making me want to deck you more right now."
"Yeah, you're right. It's definitely how you just got up and left us, and now you won't even talk to either of us. Seriously, what the fuck, dude?"
Evan has the nerve to cross his arms and look annoyed. "I didn't come here for the party. I just walked Calvin over to give him some moral support. He wants to talk to Heath before he takes off for med school."
His curiosity gets the better of him, and Cappie glances over his shoulder. From what he can see, Heath and Calvin are making out in the corner of the kitchen. Calvin's hand might be down Heath's pants. "Talk? Is that what the kids are calling it these days?"
"And, uh, speaking of talking. The actual kind of talking." Evan rubs the back of his neck awkwardly. "I kind of think we need to. You, me, and Casey, I mean."
"Gosh, really? That's a novel idea, Evan. Me and Casey totally didn't think of that, so, you know, thanks! We were just calling you to see if you wanted to get together and watch a little Gilmore Girls, but talking? That never even occurred to us!"
"Come on. I know you're pissed, but can you just lay off for a second? We really do need to talk."
Cappie may be furious, but he likes the sound of that kind of "we" every time that Evan says it, and anyway, Evan's right. "Yeah, fine," he agrees. "Let me just find Case." He turns around, intending to wade back through the throng of people drinking in the living room, but Casey's already making her way across the room. He watches her maneuver around Beaver and a Tri-Pi, making a face as she realizes Beaver has a stethoscope shoved between the Tri-Pi's boobs, and Cappie smiles fondly at her.
Cappie realizes Evan is smiling at her the same way, but when he tries to catch Evan's eye, Evan looks away. God, he and Cappie have spent the last three years staring at the same girl in the same way, and then looking for every possible excuse not to talk about it. Cappie's so fucking over it.
"Hey, guys," Casey says as she approaches them, and Cappie wants to grab her hand, but he doesn't want to make Evan any more uncomfortable than he clearly already is. "Phone problems, Evan?"
"Uh, about that." Evan seems to relax a little now that she's here, like he thinks Cappie won't punch him if Casey's standing next to him. To be fair, Cappie wouldn't, but he keeps glaring at Evan anyway. "Look, I'm sorry, but- wait, Cappie, why aren't you wearing pants?"
"What does that have to do with anything?"
"Nothing, I guess." Evan frowns. "This just seems like a conversation we should be having while everyone is wearing pants."
"Well, I don't think you get to set the terms of this conversation."
"Maybe we should argue about something that matters more than pants," Casey suggests. "Like how you ran away and won't talk to us."
"I don't think it's fair that you guys are so mad about this," Evan says. "I didn't really do anything to you."
"What the hell? You left," Cappie says. "You just bailed on us."
"I was jealous," Evan says quietly. "At the End of the World Party, I told you not to go after Casey because I was jealous. I was jealous of how the two of you always pick each other, and how you always put each first. But it didn't make me happy when Casey did pick me and Cappie and I hated each other for two years. Not like it made me happy when it was the three of us."
"I know," Casey says. "It's always the best when it's just the three of us. So don't you think that probably means something?"
"What I'm saying is, you guys always pick each other. I don't care how much we talk about it being the three of us. So we did a thing, whatever, I'm not sure why you guys think that means everything's going to change. Sooner or later, no matter how well things are going, you're just going to pick each other again. Everything was going so well, and then you started dating. You picked each other, and you said nothing was going to change, but it obviously fucked everything up. I'm so damn tired of it, and you can't be mad at me for that."
"We're weren't picking each other," Cappie protests. "You really need to work on listening better, Evan. Put it on your to-do list, right after learning how to work a phone. We were picking you. We're picking the three of us."
"Think of it as us bringing another member onto our team," Casey says, and even as she says it, she looks shocked that it's coming out of her mouth. This is great. Cappie's going to give her so much shit about this. Score one for dream Cappie.
"Are you seriously using a, like, baseball metaphor on me right now? Really?"
"Well, less base, and more balling, but yeah, she is," Cappie clarifies, and Evan cracks a smile for the first time all night. It's nice to see. Evan looks nice when he smiles. Actually, Evan looks good when he smiles.
"You have to admit, it didn't really work when I was just dating you, Evan," Casey says. "And it hasn't really worked when I'm just dating Cappie. And if I had to hazard a guess, I would say that just the two of you dating would be even more disastrous. But if the three of us are together- I think it would work if the three of us are together."
"I guess the ship's sailed on me trying to convince you that Cappie and I don't want to date, then," Evan mutters, and they all laugh.
"I know this is crazy," Cappie says. "Like, European porn crazy, but-"
"Okay, seriously, what is it with you and European porn?" Casey says, as Evan nods knowingly.
"You know how, like- wait, actually, I think I need a visual aid for this." Cappie looks at both of them. "And it's convenient, because that visual aid is right upstairs in my room-"
"What, right next to your etchings?" Evan asks, and Cappie says, "Shit, that was actually fairly amusing," and Casey says, tentatively, "So we're good?"
Cappie studies Evan. He doesn't look relaxed, entirely, but he also doesn't look like he wants to take off in the opposite direction from them, which is an improvement. Finally he nods and says, "Let's go, team."
"Oh, hey, can we give ourselves a team name? Like- like, CaEvanSey, or something. No, wait, CapCaven."
"No," Evan and Casey say in unison, and Evan shakes his head and asks, "How do you not punch him all the time?"
"Oh, don't worry. You can still punch him," Casey says, and Cappie says, "Hey!" and the three of them walk into the house and up the stairs, together, to Cappie's room.