"Roooose," John cajoles while swinging the door of a tiny university dorm open with more force than exactly necessary and stepping into the room without waiting for an invitation.
The addressed woman is currently sitting cross legged on her bed, dressed in an old pair of black leggings and clad in a washed out grey hoodie, trying to learn for her next exam on economics and environment. She presses her lips together to keep herself from smiling like a fool. Whenever John, her best friend, confidant and soul mate is around, Rose has a hard time keeping herself from beaming like spot light set on maximum. Like her, he is a student. While she is studying economics and data processing, he's about to make his doctorate in physics, astronomy and chemistry.
John, all lanky and lean legs and arms strides in. He's wearing his signature brown pinstriped suit and a pair of red trainers that had already seen better days. The untamable hair of his is in more disarray than usual and his cheeks are flushed as if he'd been running the way from his dorm to hers without a halt. He flops down next to her on the bed as if he was it's rightful owner and lies down without having the decency to take his shoes off. Rose huffs in fake anger and pokes him into the calf, gesturing for him to put his feet down. He winches for good measure, even though she didn't hurt him, and obeys.
Crossing his hands behind his head, feet dangling merrily from the bed, he looks up expectantly at the blonde woman. His mouth is turned upside down in a wild grin. John is showing off too much teeth and the downright manic gleam in his eye is slightly unsettling. But then this is John and whenever he makes a new scientific discovery, he shows off that bonkers expression. If she could, Rose would instantly snog it right off of his smug face.
At closer inspection, it's different though. His gaze holds none of it's usual warmth but hides almost utter terror under the crazy charade. Rose nudges his shoulder gently and raises her chin to get him talking. He stays silent and continues to stare at her face. His brows are scrunched as if he's trying to figure something out.
"So?" she asks worriedly, bending down to him and drumming her fingers playfully against his chest. The primal part of her is considering sending the buttons of his jacket flying and sucking his delicious throat. She's breathing his scent in, which is decidedly not the best in the entire galaxy and certainly isn't herb and musky, or tart and sweet at the same time. Or anything else how the perfect male is supposed to smell. Absolutely not, Rose decides.
"I have found the ideal solution," he brags proudly.
"Of course you have," Rose retorts dryly while wondering if her ever feels the same about her. "Care to share with the class to what problem? Cancer? World hunger? The meaning of life?" she suggests.
John snorts bemusedly. "I'm afraid, although thank you for acknowledging how brilliant I am, I'm not quite that impressive today." He flashes her a toothy grin and shrugs his shoulders apologetically. The gesture looks a bit ridiculous given the fact that he's lying flat on his back and Rose drops her pillow against his head.
"To my financial troubles," he finally explains sheepishly, turning to face his friend properly.
Rose stills beside him and grapes like a fish dropped on land. "What financial troubles could you possibly have? You have five well doted scholarships and only six months left until you get your doctorate," she exclaims.
"Had," he corrects her with a defeated sigh. Rose arches an eyebrow at him but knows better than to press him further with words.
"I might have insulted one or two members of the committee,” John elaborates. “But in my defence: they were utterly incompetent. Also, you remember when I blew up that teensy weensy laboratory? Or that I proved to Simmons that his life work contained an essential mistake and me being slightly fast forward about it."
Rose snorts. "But all five?! And why are you telling me only now? The incident at the lab was months ago," she groans out appalled.
"Weeeeellllll," he drawls the word out to give himself time to muster up a fitting answer and fails. “I'll get expelled if I don't make up for the lab and on top I'll have to pay this and last years tuition fee.”
Propping himself up and inspecting her closely he asks her a question. "What would you do, if you needed a big amount of money in a very short time?"
"Pick up a job and raise a loan?" Rose suggests swallowing heavily.
He scoffs. "I'm not exactly creditworthy."
Rose sighs. He's right about that. John is terrible with money. It's not like he spends it on himself. Apart from four suits, two blue and two pinstriped ones, and two pair of worn down trainers, he doesn't own any clothes. He doesn't go out either but when it comes to science stuff, he's almost insatiable. She can still recall when he tried buying yellow cake over the dark net. Only very heavy flirting from her part could convince the federal agent showing up at his doormat that the incident was nothing but a terrible misunderstanding. To put it short: John is a bit of a quixotic geek.
"And no bank clerk in his right mind would give me 3000.000." Rose whistles and drops her book. She starts chewing her bottom lip, a habit that uses up at least three lip balms per month. She has a feeling John is about to increase that number during the next couple of weeks. "That lab wasn't so small after all," he adds while tugging his ear nervously.
"So, in which jobs would you gain so much money in a very short amount of time?" he repeats his earlier question.
"Drug dealer or hitman," Rose deadpans.
"Almost," John answers drily. "But I settled for something less gory. I'll become a hooker instead," he announces at last beaming like a loon.
“You what?!” Rose blinks, swallows and blinks again. Silence settles between the two of them. She opens her mouth closes it, wants to say something but the air has been knocked out of her lungs.
She is in love with the mad man sitting next to her for as long as she knows about his existence. This is her most loyal friend, sometimes an arrogant brat, a self confident scientist, sometimes entirely obnoxious and full of humour. He's moody and driven to the point of obsession and the most brilliant being she has ever encountered. Not one day since their first encounter has passed on which the two of them hadn't been hugging, holding hands or flirting like it was an Olympic discipline but to no avail. Apart from a very chaste peek on the lips nothing had ever happened. Rose has meanwhile pondered the possibility, that John might be asexual but she had never had the guts to actually ask him, out of fear confessing her intentions might ruin their friendship. And now the master of the art of harmless flirting wants to become a hooker?
“John.” She finally clears her throat. “Do you know what a hooker is? They don't have anything to do with Captain Hook or fishing.”
“Of course I know that.” He rolls his eyes at her. “I'm brilliant, me. And a bit fit, don't you think?” He waggles his eyebrows suggestively and Rose can't help but bursting out into a fit of giggles.
“Blimey, John! You almost had me,” Rose laughs. “With your reputation and everything you have already achieved, you shouldn't have trouble finding a well doted job.” Rose shakes her head.
In response, John only arches an eyebrow at her. “With my reputation I would be glad if McDonald's let's me fry their chips,” he retorts. “Rose, this time I really fucked up,” he mutters finally and the cheerful facade crumbles as tears well up in his eyes.
Rose's heart literally stops upon hearing his broken voice. She hasn't ever seen John McCrimmon being so desperate. There must be more than to his story than some broken equipment and a couple of upset scientists. John has always been rude and gotten away with it. Raising up on her knees, she pulls John into a tight hug and presses him firmly against her chest. “I'll fix this,” she whispers into his ear while drawing soothing circles on his back. “Let me fix this for you, okay? I could sign the loan for you...”
John pulls back and shakes his head firmly. “I would never want you to! You have helped me through all the mess I made so often before, Rose. This time, I need to pull my head out of the loop by myself.” He sounds decisive and Rose sighs. “Alright,” she agrees. “So what's your plan then?”
“Told you,” he answers biting his lower lip and averting her eyes. “I'll become a hooker. I met a woman from an escort agency and she explained the details to me. It sounds all very discreet and well...” He's tugging his ear again, Rose notes. Her mind is blissfully blank as she tries wrapping her brains around the idea.
“You don't even have sex. Like ever,” she finally bursts out, wondering since when he plays such idiotic pranks on her.
Falling back on the bed beside her and stretching leisurely he nods. “That's true. I don't give sex much thought, usually. Besides I don't have much of a craving for it, unless I'm really fond of somebody.” He scratches his chin thoughtfully and gives Rose a long, unreadable look. “But it's a healthy activity,” he carries on undeterred by her silence. “Also, I have read up on the female body. The mechanics for pushing the right buttons seem simple enough. I'll just have to give the erogenous zones the attention they deserve. Did you know, that adding a little bit of pain to your lovemaking can enhance the experience? Like, a bit of scratching or biting?” He beams expectantly at her. “Rose?” he asks but she can't answer.
All she can think right now, is that he indeed has a sex drive. But only when he's with the right person. The years of hoping and longing have finally come to an end, she notes bitterly while he rattles on with his clinical realizations on human intercourse. "I was never quite aware of the fact that one should busy himself with earlobes." His voice drifts over to her.
John shifts beside her on the bed and continues. “I've also occupied myself with reading up on how to give someone oral pleasure,” he shares as her eyebrows creep up to her hairline and her fingernails dig into the palms of her hands to keep herself from bursting into tears.
It's mental. He's explaining exactly what she wants him to do with her, but at the same time, not. Her heart breaks into a thousand pieces, yet she manages to stay completely calm. Only her increased pulse would give her away. Thankfully, John doesn't realize what he's doing to her.
“You know, it's all about the technique,” he elaborates. “You pull your partners legs apart and settle down between them. Then it's about timing. You shouldn't go for the centre too quickly. You need to take your time. A kiss here, a bit of sucking there on your way down. You busy yourself a bit with the neck and the chest and scoot downwards. And once you've reached the goal, so to say, it's all about the technique again. About not adding too much pressure too early. Once you hear her breathing heavily, you add your fingers. It's really no rocket science.” He snorts while staring thoughtfully at said fingers. “I've always been excellent at technical activities. So, Rose. What do you think?”