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Worlds Collide

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Luckily, you already had a couple of conventions under your belt. While the entire fan convention world was a lot for you to understand and take in, you at least had done enough to where you understood what went on and what was expected of you. It wasn’t easy being the new girl, and you couldn’t help but feel a bit overwhelmed at how all of this made you relive your time as a child who did nothing but move around and bounce in and out of new schools constantly. You were lucky if you stayed in one school long enough to make friends for a short time, and generally, you didn’t have friends. This part of your job felt very similar to that. You were either on set, working with the same guys, or popping up in a new city every other weekend for a convention. While it was sort of nice to do this and see familiar faces each time; you knew that you didn’t fit in. You knew that you had no real friends here.

Today, you were in Burbank, which was nice considering that it meant you were close to home. As per the last few conventions you attended, you were greeted by the usual people; it was always Rob, Rich, Matt, the band, and a few of the girls depending on whether they were signed on for the weekend. Honestly, you wondered why you had been scheduled for so many cons considering how new you were to the show and the fact that no one really liked your character.

You kept up on social media, of course, and you knew that the BMOL in general were not fan favorites. The fact that you played the part of a stuffy, almost bitchy character didn’t help in your popularity. However, fans seemed to enjoy the fact that there was a new female on the show who hadn’t been brutally killed off yet. They seemed to talk a lot of crap about your character, yet they wanted to see you as a person.

From the last few cons you attended, you weren’t surprised to hear fan accounts of meeting you; most indicating that you as a person weren’t far off from the character you played. The comparisons didn’t hurt your feelings. You had always been told that you were too intense, too quiet, and maybe a bit too stuffy for your own good. You brushed it all off though, knowing that people just didn’t understand that you simply took your job very seriously. You took your entire life very seriously because you finally had control over it.

Today, you joined the early birds for lunch, the ones who were at the cons from day one all the way up to the end of the weekend. It was always awkward for you, but you tried hard to stay involved. Truthfully, you envied the close bonds that they all seemed to share with each other. But, you understood that they had all been doing this for so long, it was inevitable for them to grow close to each other. Even those who maybe starred in one or two episodes early on in the show had been a part of the con circuit from the beginning. It was a different world for someone who came onto the show more recently, playing an unlikable character to find a way to fit in.

You sat at the table with them, eating in silence as they discussed plans for karaoke and the rest of the night after. It was almost as if you didn’t exist at this point, but that didn’t really bother you. They had tried to include you the first few times you attended a con; and you, in your need to stay professional, always turned them down. It wasn’t really your style to partake in dress up nights and sing off-key karaoke, and it certainly wasn’t your style to stay out all night drinking when you knew you had work to do the next day.

So, you listened, wishing that the weekend would go by a little quicker so that you could either go home or get back to work.

“Let me guess,” you heard Kim speak up, looking directly at you as you focused on your lunch, “you’re not willing to do karaoke still?”

“It’s not really my thing,” you explained, “no one wants to be subjected to the torture of hearing me sing.”

“You could at least show up, help us with a little back-up vocals,” Rob added.

“I’d have to dress up?”

“Yeah, everyone does. We have extra costumes,” he replied.

“I’m gonna pass,” you said. You poked at your food with your fork, knowing that eventually, they were going to stop trying to involve you if you kept this up. It sucked, but you knew it was for the best.

They went back to ignoring you, not even bothering to push harder or to even bring up going out afterwards. You did what you did best; kept your head down and stayed to yourself.


You got through the day without a hitch. Your panel went well and you managed to avoid too many questions as to why your character was so horrible on the show. Mostly, you hung out quietly, showing up for photo ops; and by the end of the day, sitting through autographs before the day came to a close.

When you were done for the day, you headed back to the green room to gather your belongings before you retired to your room for the night. Everyone else was already talking excitedly, already getting ready for their Friday night karaoke event. You quickly retrieved what you had went there for, avoiding eye contact with anyone who might make another attempt at talking you into taking part. No one even looked your way. You figured they had finally given up. Even as they talked about where they would go after karaoke, no one bothered to ask if that was something you’d be interested in.

You left the room, very much unnoticed and began to the long trek back to your hotel room. At least you could have a few hours of quiet before it was time to turn in. You had early mornings at conventions and you always wondered how the others managed to function with their late nights.

You were walking along, humming quietly to yourself when you heard a voice call out from behind you.

“Y/N?” It came as a question, and you didn’t recognize the voice. Whoever it was obviously didn’t even know if it was you for sure. You stopped and turned toward the voice. It was one of the guys from Rob’s band, now walking toward you, a small smile on his face as he realized it was you.

“Hey, Billy?” You replied, now feeling pretty stupid over the fact that you were questioning whether you had his name right. You were bad enough at being friendly with the people who actually worked on the show, but the band were definitely not people that you interacted with often.

“That’s me,” he replied as he stepped closer to you. He stopped to look at you, still smiling behind all that facial hair.

“Sorry,” you mumbled, now uncomfortable by how close he was standing to you. You barely talked to anyone else, and this was by far the longest conversation you had ever shared with this man in particular. “Sometimes I get names mixed up. Luckily I got it right though.”

“Where are you headed?” He asked. You turned on your heels, walking again as he followed you.

“Back to my room, I’m done for the day.”

“Which room are you in?”

“Excuse me?”

“I mean, what floor are you on or whatever? I was headed back to my room and I thought I could walk with you.”

“Oh, I’m on the 3rd floor,” you replied, unsure if you should give this man your room number. You didn’t know him well and you always made it a habit not to give too much information to strange men.

“Me too,” he grinned, those green eyes sparkling. You looked away from him quickly, suddenly feeling really nervous that he was talking to you and apparently now walking with you.

The two of you walked in an awkward silence for some time. You hated feeling uncomfortable around people, but you couldn’t help it. This man in particular never talked to you, and your mind began to race with different thoughts as to why he was choosing to talk to you now and walk with you back to your rooms. You both stopped at the elevators and you reached your hand out to press the button at the same time that he did. Your fingers made contact as you both attempted to push the button.

“Whoops,” Billy said as he smiled at you. You felt your face heat up, embarrassed that you were being so stupid around him. You kept quiet as you waited for the elevator.

“You’re not joining everyone else tonight?” You asked suddenly. You hated small talk, but you figured a conversation would help to make this all less awkward.

“Mike, Stephen, and I don’t do karaoke,” he said, “we usually just go hang out and maybe meet up with everyone later.

“Oh,” you said softly, now unsure of what to say next.

“You’re not going?”

“Me?” You asked, “I don’t do karaoke. No one wants to witness that.”

“I bet you’re a great singer,” Billy replied, “and you would probably look great in one of those costumes.”

“Haha,” you said sarcastically.

“If you’re not doing anything, you’re more than welcome to come hang out with us,” he looked at you, sort of hopeful.

“I’m okay.”

“You just look sort of lonely all the time, might be fun to go out.”

“I’m fine,” you reiterated.

“I thought it was kinda rude that they didn’t invite you,” he said referring to the rest of the group who had made plans without you.

“It’s my own fault,” you replied, “I always say no, so I think they just gave up on asking.”

“Why do you say no? You don’t like them or something?” You glared at him, unamused at his incessant questions. The fact that he was even talking to you had you on edge and you very much wanted him to be quiet and go away. You decided against being rude as the elevator finally showed up. You both stepped on and you let him push the button to the third floor, careful not to make the move yourself and risk making physical contact again.

“It’s not that. They’re all really great. I mean, I’ve really only worked with the main cast. But, I like everyone,” you explained. It was true. You definitely didn’t have any negative feelings toward anyone. In fact, they were all nice and seemed like a lot of fun.

“You just like your alone time then?”

“I don’t know. I don’t really fit in. I know they try include me sometimes just to be nice.”

Billy scrunched up his face, looking sort of confused by your statement. “I’m pretty sure everyone fits in with this group.”

“Well, I don’t,” you said, glancing over to him, “but it’s okay, I’m just passing through.”

The elevator stopped at your floor and you both moved to get off. You walked quickly toward your room, not concerned that he would see where your room was. You dug for your room key, and stopped in front of your door, trying to swipe the card as fast as you could.

“You know,” Billy said as he stood next to you, watching you struggle with your key card, “if you change your mind, you can text me.”

You looked up at him as he held his hand out to you.

“What?”

“Your phone,” he explained, “I can give you my number. In case you change your mind.”

“That’s not necessary,” you said, “I won’t change my mind.”

You finally got your key card to work. You hurriedly opened your door, stepping into your room as you let the door close behind you. You stood there for a moment, realizing how rude you had been. You didn’t even say goodbye or anything, you had let the door slam in his face when he was only trying to be nice to you. This was the first time in a long time when you actually had a moment of feeling something like regret. Out of all of the people who took part in these conventions, he had been the only one to say more than a few sentences to you. You told yourself that he wasn’t the type of person you should hang out with because you knew the type.

You frowned at yourself when you then realized that you really didn’t have a clue as to what type of people you really wanted to associate yourself with, in fact, you weren’t sure that you ever wanted to associate yourself with anyone at all.

You were still really confused by Billy’s need to carry on a conversation with you. After all, you had done a few of these cons and the man never even looked at you. You assumed that he was making small talk because of your reputation of being sort of stuck-up, and he was probably making fun of you.You may be the quiet one around here, but you weren’t blind. This wouldn’t be the first time someone made fun of you behind your back. Your moment of feeling guilty over your treatment of him washed away pretty quickly when you decided that Billy was probably one of those people. He was obviously like everyone else that you had to work with; completely not serious about their jobs, and ready to step in and give you a hard time because you were often too serious.

You decided to not let it bother you. You brushed off the conversation with Billy as you got ready for bed. You knew that tomorrow, everyone, including him, would go back to pretending that you didn’t exist.

Chapter Text

On Saturday, you found yourself back in the green room, uncomfortably sitting with a few of your co-workers as you enjoyed your coffee. Luckily, your handler for the weekend managed to get your order right this time. Sure, you were picky about your coffee, but you didn’t think it was that difficult to get one coffee right occasionally. The young girl working with you currently seemed to have a good grasp on what you expected though. You could see this one actually working out for a while.

You sipped your coffee, smirking as you watched everyone else sit around as if death was upon them. It was the same every time with them. They had been up all night doing their karaoke thing, and still managed to go out afterwards only to show up the next day hungover and exhausted. You’d think they would learn by now. You, on the other hand, were a morning person to be begin with. All too often your co-workers would glare at you and how perky you were in the mornings. You also prided yourself on being well-behaved and ready for work at any given moment. Funny how after all these years, none of them even tried to go one weekend without partying.

You glanced up from your coffee and your phone suddenly when Billy and Rob entered the room together. Why your stomach decided to flip upon seeing them made no sense to you. You figured that you were just aware of the fact that Billy had talked to you yesterday, probably to make fun of you later. You narrowed your eyes at him as he walked toward the table where everyone was sitting. Despite your obvious glare, he looked right at you and smiled. Again, your stomach did that weird flip flop that you weren’t used to feeling.

“Hey,” he said, “do you think you can move your giant bag so other people can sit down?”

You blushed, also not used to people calling you out when you were being inconsiderate.

“Oh, sorry,” you mumbled as you grabbed your bag from the chair next to you, carefully placing it on the floor beneath your own chair. Billy plopped down in the now vacant chair next to you and you quickly adjusted yourself so that you were facing away from him.

“You should’ve come out last night,” he began. You looked around, wondering who he was talking to until you looked right at him and his eyes were on you.

“Who? Me?” you asked, pointing to yourself.

“Yeah, I told you it would be fun, you missed out.”

“I’m sure I didn’t miss much,” you replied dryly, taking another drink of coffee.

“Yeah,” he continued. He leaned closer to you, ready to tell you all about his night. “We found this great restaurant that had the best Mexican food. Usually, we stick to old favorites, but we were feeling a little adventurous. And, we met up with everyone at a bar after they were done with karaoke. It was a lot of fun.”

“That’s great,” you replied, unsure of why he was even telling you all of this.

“Hey, maybe we can have dinner before SNS tonight.”

You stared at him, sort of shocked and deeply uncomfortable now. What was he doing? This man had never said two words to you before. Suddenly, he’s very talkative and apparently wanting you to have dinner with him. Naturally, your doubts took over, knowing full well that people just didn’t want to make the effort to hang out with you, much less take you on a date.

“Why?” You asked  carefully. You were trying not to come across as rude again, after all, you had basically slammed a door shut in his face yesterday. But, you felt awkward with how he was suddenly paying attention to you. You weren’t used to people going out of their way to talk to you, and you certainly weren’t used to guys like him.

“I don’t know, like I said, you’re so quiet and antisocial. Might be fun.”

You were now aware of the fact that the others who were sitting within earshot were watching this whole thing unfold. You could see some of them watching the exchange out of the corner of your eye. As if this wasn’t uncomfortable enough, now you had an audience. You knew that you had tried really hard not to get to know most of these people, because you took yourself a lot more seriously than any of them did, but at the same time, you had also been trying hard not to keep coming off as a total jerk. Something that you were failing quite miserably at, by the way. You didn’t need their approval, but you already had a reputation in the business and you didn’t necessarily want everyone to think it was accurate.

“Oh,” you said, “I mean, I can’t imagine how eating dinner would be fun, I eat dinner every day.”

Billy furrowed his brows at you as if he were confused.

“No, I mean, it might be fun to hang out. None of us really know you, you could be fun to know.”

You held onto his gaze for some reason, feeling sort of drawn in by those eyes and that soft smile. You heard someone else chuckle from across the table, to which you turned toward the sound to see that Rob was sort of losing his cool over the statement that Billy had made. For the second time just this morning, you felt your face heat up, knowing that you were red out of embarrassment.

“What’s so funny?” Billy asked. You turned back to him, noticing that he was clenching his jaw as if he were offended by Rob’s laughter.

“Nothing man,” Rob replied, turning very serious very fast.

“It’s okay,” you chimed in, “I know he thinks it’s funny because I am the least fun person around here.”

“I didn’t mean-”

“I get it. I’m boring because I don’t go out drinking every night with you guys. I don’t do karaoke and I don’t take part in whatever weird stuff you guys decide to do.”

“You’re not boring,” Billy promised you.

“I’m perfectly okay with being boring,” you added. You picked up your bag from the floor, grabbing your coffee and phone as you stood up. “At least I can make it to my scheduled appearances on time and not show up hungover.”

“Hey!” Rob objected, “we’re not always hungover…”

You rolled your eyes as you walked away, unwilling to listen to anymore of this. It wasn’t in their nature to be mean, they were all genuinely nice people who really did go out of their way to make you feel included. It wasn’t their faults that you chose to alienate yourself. But, the fact that, for the first time since working with them, someone had finally pointed out how lame you were, and it sort of stung.

You relocated to the other side of the room, sitting on a couch and pulling out your phone as you pretended to be busy doing something else. You couldn’t get over the fact that now these people thought of you the same way everyone else you ever worked with did. You wanted to be better, wanted to have friends; but it was all just so difficult for you. They didn’t understand you and you figured it would be easier if it just stayed that way. When you did glance up from your phone, you saw that Billy was now following you. You sighed heavily and set your phone down as he approached you.

“What?” You asked. You took note of the fact that you were still being rude. You really should stop doing that.

“I really don’t think you’re boring,” he replied as he stood in front of you.

“Whatever. I really don’t care what anyone here thinks of me.”

“You know, my offer always stands if you want to hang out sometime.”

“Why would you even want to hang out with me in the first place?” You asked, studying him intently, sure that you might catch him on some kind of game that he might be playing.

“Because I don’t think you’re as bad as everyone makes you sound.”

“Oh, I didn’t realize that they talk about me.”

“I probably shouldn’t have said it like that,” he replied. You watched him as he ran a hand across the back of his neck, that warm smile still present on his face as he looked at you.

“What do you want Billy? Are you really just trying to insist that I have dinner with everyone? That’s not going to happen, because obviously, no one likes me and I’m not going to waste my time.”

“I didn’t mean with everyone else. I meant just you and I.”

“Why?”

“Why not?” He shot back.

You looked him up and down hesitantly. You really didn’t get him at all, and you wanted to know why he was even talking to you, but he obviously wasn’t the type of guy to give you a straight answer.

“Because, if it’s just the two of us, then that makes it a date.”

“Okay, so, wanna go on a date with me?”

“No,” you said simply.

“Ouch,” he replied as he grabbed for his chest, feigning pain as you shot him down. You couldn’t help but giggle over how strange he was acting. “Come on, when was the last time you just had dinner with someone?”

“It’s been a while,” you said honestly.

“Look, you don’t have to if you really don’t want to.”

“I know I don’t.”

“I just- I’d like to get to know you. Everyone else here has given up, but I think it might be worth trying for.”

“What do you have in mind?”

“Are you- are you saying yes?”

“No. I’m still curious though.”

“I don’t know; you seem like the kind of girl a guy would take to dinner. I’d have to get to know you a little better before I could make other plans though.”

“Hmm,” you mused for a moment, “don’t you have somewhere to be?”

Billy looked around quickly, just now noticing that the band and Rich were on their way out the door to do the introduction.

“Oh, yeah, so? Is that a yes?” He asked hopefully as he waved to the guys who were now yelling for him to hurry up.

“No,” you answered with a sly grin. You surprised yourself at how it felt as if you were almost flirting with the man. You couldn’t help yourself, no matter how much you told yourself to stop. He was cute, even though he was definitely not your type, but you figured a little flirting didn’t hurt. It was nice to have someone notice you, to maybe look beyond the fact that you were stuck up sometimes. You didn’t really know how to handle it though, since no one had spoken to you this way in a very long time.

“You know, I could still give you my number,” he smiled as he turned from you to rush out the door, “in case you change your mind.”

“Why do you think I’ll change my mind?” You called after him.

He turned to face you, walking backwards now as he shrugged, “I don’t know. Something tells me that you might.”


The thing about being the type of person to stay quiet and under the radar, is that you often realized that you heard a lot more than other people wanted you to hear. You were constantly observing, trying not to make it too obvious if you could. You often overheard conversations between your co-workers, usually really lame things that you had no interest in. It was easy for you because most people ignored you, almost as if you weren’t even in the same room half the time.

You were kicked back on the couch still, waiting until it was time for your next panel. You didn’t bother keeping track of the time, that’s what you had a handler for, and she knew she could always find you in the same spot. You absentmindedly thumbed through your phone, checking your emails and social media without any real interest, when you heard the voices of Matt and Kim just behind you. You sunk down further into your seat, knowing that they probably couldn’t see you sitting there as you heard them sit at a table behind you.

“You know, I don’t know why Billy is even trying with that one,” you heard Kim say, “she’s not social at all, and while she seems nice enough, she doesn’t seem like she’d be interested in him.”

“What makes you say that? Chicks dig Billy.” Matt replied.

“I mean, doesn’t she come off as kind of… high-maintenance? Kind of snobby? Like, I really don’t like to label people, but we’ve all tried to get to know her and include her and she just brushes us off like she doesn’t want to know us.”

“I guess so,” Matt agreed, “maybe she’s just shy.”

You sunk down lower in your seat, as quietly as you could so that you could hear more. You usually weren’t interested in the conversations of these people, but sometimes, they would talk about you, and you couldn’t stop yourself from listening most of the time.

“I don’t know, Billy is wasting his time. A girl like that would never go out with a guy like him.”

“Come one, he can be pretty high-maintenance too,” Matt added.

“Yeah, but he’s also fun. Like, he enjoys doing crazy things. I just don’t see that whole thing working out.” You heard the door behind you open just then and you perked up to see if you could hear who else was going to join in the conversation.

“I’m looking for Y/N,” you heard your handler say breathlessly. She sounded sort of frantic.

“It’s just us in here,” Kim responded.

You took that as your cue to let it be known that you were present. You stood up from your spot on the couch, turning to face everyone with a sly grin on your face. The looks on Kim and Matt’s faces were pretty priceless though when they realized you had been sitting there the whole time.

“I’m here,” you said to your handler as you made your way to her. Kim and Matt followed you with their eyes, looking humiliated now. They hadn’t expected for you to hear that whole thing, and while you were far from hurt by their words, you took great pleasure in letting them know that you had heard it all. It wasn’t the first time anyone called you snobby or high-maintenance. In fact, you were proud at how observant they were.

No one said anything, you just looked at the two of them as you walked out for your panel, smiling at them as you left.


After yet another panel consisting of you, Adam, and David; mostly defending the choices that your characters made on the show and dodging questions about why you were all so horrible, you couldn’t help but think about what Matt and Kim had said about you in the green room.

You usually didn’t let things like that get to you, because you knew that you were a little high-maintenance. You took pride in your looks and how you dressed, mostly because that’s just how you were brought up. You didn’t want to appear to be stuck-up, but you also knew that this was a common misconception about you often because of the fact that you were quiet, kept to yourself, and had the tendency not to take anyone’s shit. Mostly, the only thing really nagging at you was how they had talked about how Billy was wasting his time. You smiled to yourself, feeling somewhat flattered that the man seemed to have interest in you. While you knew you’d never date a man like him, it still got to you that Matt and Kim had made that assumption without even knowing what your type was.

In fact, you didn’t have a type. You hadn’t actually dated in a long time, sans the one boyfriend that your publicist set you up with to help “brush up your image” a bit more. That had been a trainwreck and because of it, you had simply decided to not bother dating anymore. You had no idea what type of man you were interested in because you were so busy focusing on your career, you never thought about it.

The idea that the two of them had talked about you as if they knew you is what had your head spinning. So what if Billy asked you out? So what if you shot him down? So what if maybe you really did consider it? It wasn’t their place to determine whether it was worth it for him or if you were even interested.

You liked to get to people. Especially people who talked about you behind your back. This is what led you to decide that maybe having dinner with the man was an okay idea. You were sure you’d have a terrible time, and he’d probably take you to some gross bar to listen to shitty music or something, but knowing that you could show the others that maybe they were wrong about you in some ways, that was all you needed to convince yourself to find Billy.


You didn’t find him until after the day was done. Many of the others had stayed behind to do more autographs, but the band was at least done for the day. You approached him when he and the other guys in the band ended up in the green room to get their things.

“Billy?” You said carefully as you approached him.

He turned to face you, a smile forming on his lips, at least, you assumed it was a smile, it was hard to tell sometimes behind all of that beard.

“Y/N? You’re actually acknowledging me?”

“Yes, I am,” you smiled. You held out your hand to him and he looked at it, confused. “Your phone please.”

He hesitated, unsure of what was happening, but he seemed to trust you enough to hand it over unlocked. You made quick work of finding out how to add yourself as a contact and you hurriedly added your phone number before saving the information and handing it back to him.

“My number,” you explained, “in case you’re still serious about dinner.”

“Really? Is this a fake number?” he asked as he examined the info you had just added.

“It’s my real number.”

“You wouldn’t even take my number, and you just decided to give me yours?” He raised a brow at you, confused even more now.

“I never call anyone. I wait for them to call me. So, you should do that later if you’re still interested.”

“Or, I could just tell you that I’m still interested right now while you’re standing here.”

You felt your stomach flip again and you were sure you were blushing yet again.

“You could do that…” you trailed off.

“Okay, let’s have dinner.”

“Fine,” you agreed in your own weird way.

“Soon,” he added, “because we’ve got the concert tonight and I have to be back for soundcheck.”

“Well, I’ll just go get ready and you can call me when you’re ready.”

He smiled at you again and you caught yourself staring at those eyes that were almost hidden behind the glasses that he always wore. It wasn’t enough to keep you from looking though, because he really did have nice eyes. “I’ll call you soon then.”

You nodded and turned to walk away, hurrying from the room as some of the others stared at you. You knew they had witnessed that whole thing, and it felt nice to prove them wrong for once.

Chapter Text

You were sort of kicking yourself over your need to prove people wrong. Now, you were sitting across from Billy at a restaurant, officially on a date with the man. You studied him, very aware of how attractive he was, despite fact that you found men with beards sort of cringeworthy. You couldn’t imagine what it would be like to kiss someone like that, but you were sure it would be annoying. Regardless, that’s not what you were here for. You were simply here to prove a point to everyone. Maybe hanging out with him would encourage everyone to stop talking about you behind your back, to stop thinking that you were boring and high-maintenance.

You hadn’t said two words to each other when you made your way here, but you were pleasantly surprised at the way Billy had opened doors for you and even pulled your chair out for you at the table. He was polite at least, and you figured you could make the most of it.

A waiter finally approached your table as the two of you sat in an uncomfortable silence. Neither of you knew how to really talk to the other.

“I’ll have the cobb salad, and water is fine for me,” you told the waiter as you handed him the menu. You glanced up at Billy who was now watching you with an amused grin on his face. “Problem?” you asked.

“I thought that only happened in movies?”

“What?”

“The lady, ordering a salad on a date. I didn’t think that was real.”

“Are you judging my choice of food?”

“Not at all,” he replied. He turned his attention to the waiter, “Actually, can you give us a few more minutes to decide?”

The waiter nodded, leaving you alone for a moment.

“I was ready to order,” you said, “I’m starving.”

“You’re starving and you ordered a salad?” He looked at you as if he didn’t believe you.

“What is the big deal?”

“I just- I brought you here to feed you. You could at least order something you actually like.”

“I like cobb salad.”

“No you don’t. No one likes salad.”

“Fine,” you said through your teeth, “can we please just order?”

Billy flagged the waiter down and he ordered the dinner special. Feeling somewhat overwhelmed and unsure of yourself, you ordered the same. Billy then ordered you each a glass of wine.

The only reason all of this was so uncomfortable was because you had never been on a date like this with anyone. You didn’t know how to act, and you certainly didn’t know what to say.

“Tell me about yourself,” Billy started.

“There’s not much to tell.”

“Where are you from?”

“I’m from a lot of different places. Born in California though.”

“You’re so quiet,” he reminded you, “I never see you talk to anyone, not even on the phone. You got family? Friends?”

“Of course I do. Have family anyway.”

“No friends? Not even childhood friends that you still talk to.”

You said nothing, feeling as you were being called out on the fact that you were actually lame. He had very quickly jumped right into getting to know you, and the thought of it left you uncomfortable. This would be the first time anyone even bothered getting to know you. No matter how much you didn’t want to talk to him, you found yourself answering his questions anyway. He was easy to talk to. And he honestly appeared to be interested in what you had to say.

“My parents and I moved around a lot when I was a kid. I was never in one place long enough to make friends. I guess that just sort of stayed the same as I got older.”

“Military brat?” He asked.

“Yeah.”

“You have siblings? Are you close to your family?”

“It’s just me. And, no, not really.”

“That’s a shame,” he said as he leaned back in his chair.

“Yeah, well, it’s for the best.”

“Tell me about them. If you want to.”

“There’s not much to tell. Like I said, we were constantly moving around. My dad wasn’t around a lot. Mom… she and I didn’t necessarily see eye-to-eye.”

“Sounds rough.”

“I survived.”

“Where do they live now?”

“Oh, they’re somewhere on the east coast. I don’t really talk to them anymore. My mom had these big plans for me, you know. I was supposed to be a lawyer or something. I knew early on that I wanted to act. I was good at it, and it made me happy. But that’s not what she wanted for me. I sort of ended up a big disappointment.” You felt your chest tighten as you talked about her, recalling how difficult things had been while you were growing up under her roof.

“Really? Because I’ve seen some of your work. You’re amazing, and you have awards… how can that be disappointing?”

You shrugged, still not sure yourself.

“I guess she had very different views on what success is,” you said softly. “What about you?”

“I’m close with my family, and I have a lot of really great friends.”

“They support you,’ you stated.

“All the time. I started playing guitar when I was a kid, and I was good at it. No one ever stopped me from that. I get to do what I love, and I get to hang out with my best friends.”

“You’re very lucky.”

“Can I ask, what’s with the act?”

“Excuse me?”

“This,” he said, gesturing to you, “this whole uncaring, cold, stoic thing you have going on.”

“It’s not an act. It’s just who I am.”

“You ever think about smiling sometimes? Maybe doing something fun?”

“Did you ask me out so that you could make fun of me?” You asked, now second guessing that you had even agreed to go out with him.

“I’m not making fun of you. I just really want to know.”

“I guess people think I’m bitchy because I take myself very seriously. I take my career seriously and I don’t have the luxury of messing around. I worked very hard to get where I am, and I can’t do anything to mess that up.”

“You know, the rest of us take our jobs seriously too. And, we’re really good at what we do.”

“I know you are.”

“That doesn’t mean that we’re not allowed to let loose once in awhile.”

“Okay,” you replied. “I just… I feel that if I let my guard down at any point, all of this comes crashing down around me. Everything that I worked for, all those years of trying to keep my mother out of my life, any little mistake I make could ruin all of that; I learned that the hard way.”

“That sounds really terrible. Why would you keep your mother out of your life, even if she didn’t agree with your career choice?”

“When I did start acting, and actually started making a living out of it, her whole mindset changed. She still didn’t think of me as anything special, she always told me I was terrible at what I did. But, when the paychecks rolled in, so did the phonecalls. Apparently I owed her something, for putting up with me all those years. And I caved, every time, just so I could have some sort of feeling of accomplishment. Eventually, I just had to walk away, cut ties.”

Billy looked at you, dumbfounded as you basically spilled your childhood trauma to him over dinner. You felt like kicking yourself when you saw the way he was looking at you, like you were pathetic and sad.

“I don’t know why I’m telling you all of this,” you mumbled, “I don’t even know you and I’m oversharing.”

“No, I wanted to get to know you better, you’re doing great.”

“Yeah, every guy wants to hear about a woman’s trauma on a first date,” you laughed as you took a drink of your wine.

“What did you mean when you said you learned the hard way?”

“Oh, that would be when I first started acting. Got myself into a little trouble when I was underage and became the talk of Hollywood for a while. My publicist was worried it would ruin my reputation and I actually didn’t get much work for a while afterwards. But, I guess like any good Hollywood scandal, it went away eventually, people stopped talking. I’ve just learned to keep to myself now and not have too much fun anymore.”

“So, there is a little bit of a rebel in there somewhere?”

“Not anymore,” you giggled, “what about you? You seem like the exact kind of guy that I should avoid if I want to stay out of trouble.”

“Why do you say that?”

“I don’t know, you’re a musician. Aren’t musicians all about trouble?”

“Not if you’re in your forties and in a band with dudes who are married with kids,” he laughed, “trust me, it’s not as crazy as you think it is.”

“Well, you look like trouble.”

“Are you judging me by my looks now?”

“I’m trying not to.”

“Well, I promise you that I’m not trouble. In fact, I’m actually a decent guy.”

“Yeah, you’re easy to talk to as well. I don’t think I’ve ever had a conversation with someone like this, ever.”

“Do you have a boyfriend?” He asked, changing the subject again. It seemed as if he were trying to cram as much ‘getting to know you’ as he could in one date.

“If I had a boyfriend, I would not be on a date with you. Why are you asking about that anyway?”

“Oh, you can tell a lot about someone based on their past relationships. Me, for example, my ex and I split mostly because I was gone a lot. It was a mutual decision.”

“Why are you telling me this?”

“So you know that I’m a nice guy.”

“I don’t doubt you,” you responded, smiling slightly. “I dated another actor for a while. Um, my publicist set us up, it wasn’t too long after the whole scandal thing. She said dating someone would make me seem more likable, maybe clean up my image a little. So, you’re not the only one who thinks of me the way you do. Most people feel the same way.”

“What happened there?”

“He dumped me after a few months. We were very different, and I don’t think he liked me very much. Honestly, I think my publicist paid him to date me,” you laughed, trying to cover the fact that the thought of it actually hurt.

“That’s horrible,” Billy replied, eyes narrowed as he listened.

“I just- I don’t put myself in that kind of position anymore. I actually liked him, but it wasn’t real, you know? It was an act, on his part anyway.” You paused, calming yourself the best you could. If there was one thing you were really good at, it was holding back feelings. In fact, most people assumed you didn’t have feelings. “Can we talk about something else?”

“Yeah, of course.”

Your food arrived, and you felt grateful that you could now eat and avoid any more conversation. You kicked yourself over how much you had indulged the man to begin with. You never talked about your parents or your ex to anyone, but then again, no one ever asked. Billy made you uncomfortable in a way, mostly because he wouldn’t be the type of person someone like you would associate yourself with if you actually talked to people. But, something about him had you feeling at ease tonight. He was easy to talk to, and more importantly, he seemed to actually want to talk to you. No one ever took the time to get to know you, and you couldn’t help but wonder why he was different. What was it about you that made him take interest?

You both ate in silence, sipping on your wine, avoiding eye contact. It had become a little much, even for you, to be sitting in such awkward silence.

“I’m sorry if I made this uncomfortable,” you apologized as you both ate. “Sometimes, I just don’t know how to talk to people.”

“It’s okay, I asked questions and you answered honestly. I appreciate that. I just didn’t want you to feel worse by my stupid questions.”

“They weren’t stupid,” you promised him, “I just don’t get many people asking me about myself. Not like that anyway. I think my honesty is a bit much for most people.”

“I like your honesty,’ he said, “there aren’t many honest people left.”

You smiled at him, both of you going back to your meals, eating in silence again. When dinner was done and the bill was paid, Billy took your hand, helping you out of your chair as you headed out to the car. The concert would be happening soon and you knew he had to be back in time. While the date had been nice, you couldn’t help but feel as if you overshared. You were certain that the man would never want to see you again after this. You told yourself that this was a good thing, since you could never date someone like him anyway; but deep down, the idea that you may have fucked this up ate away at you.

You were terrible at talking to people, which is why you avoided it. Apparently, when you actually did engage in conversation with someone, you liked to spill your guts to them completely. You hated that you had said any of it, mostly because now this man knew more about you than anyone else ever did. You only hoped that he could keep his mouth shut, maybe pretend to forget everything that you had said when he decided to run far away from the crazy lady that he had accidentally asked on one date.

You drove back to the hotel in silence, knowing that when you got there, you’d walk away from him and probably never speak to him again.

“You should come to the show tonight,” Billy said suddenly, “I know it’s not your thing, but you should give it a chance.”

“I don’t know if I should. I don’t think anyone wants me there.”

“I do,” he said simply, “I think you’d have fun, good ol wholesome fun.”

“I don’t know… maybe,” you replied. You considered it. You had been doing these cons for a little while and never once even attempted to show up for SNS. It’s not that you hated music, you actually really loved music, but you knew that the concert was something that the rest of the cast took great pride in. They, along with the fans, came together to listen to Louden Swain and the other actors considered it an honor to be a part of it. It didn’t feel like it was your place to just join in, you hadn’t earned that right yet, and you assumed you never would. “As long as I don’t have to sing.”

“Just come watch. Maybe try to have some fun.”

“I’ll think about it.”


Upon arriving at the hotel, you and Billy said goodbye, parting ways as he headed for soundcheck and you, in turn, heading back to your room. You had decided that you would go to the show, at least make the effort to be sociable with the cast. Also, Billy had invited you, and for some reason, you didn’t want to let him down. Despite the still present nagging feeling in the back of your mind that Billy was simply leading you on to make fun of you, you thought that he might actually be interested in getting to know you.

You freshened up in your room before heading back down to the convention area early. You could hear the band already in the theater doing soundcheck as you made your way to the green room. You were alone and decided to sit and wait. Everyone else should be showing up soon. You walked toward the couch, noticing a guitar leaned up against it as you sat. You picked it up curiously, holding it on your lap as you began to strum. Unfortunately, you didn’t know how to play. But, you messed around with it anyway, laughing at yourself and how terrible it sounded. You didn’t know how to hold it, or where to even put your hands, but you sort of wished that you did know.

You goofed off for a while, looking up as someone suddenly entered the room. You saw Rob, followed by the rest of the band. Rob noticed you, and looked at you with a raised eyebrow, seemingly surprised to see you there.

“Hey, Y/N,” Rob said slowly, “I didn’t expect you to be here.”

“Well, if it’s okay, I’d like to see you guys play for once.”

“That’s… cool,” he replied, looking confused. “Is that my guitar?”

“Oh,” you responded, looking down at the guitar that you were still holding. “I’m sorry, I shouldn’t have messed with it.”

“Do you play?” Billy asked suddenly, moving toward you.

“What? No,” you replied, moving to put the guitar back.

“Want me to show you?” He looked back to Rob, silently asking of it was okay that he used his guitar to teach you something. Rob shrugged, waving Billy, not too concerned that you had helped yourself in the first place.

“That’s okay-”

“Here, hold it like this,” he moved to the couch before you could think, sitting right behind you, uncomfortably close to you as he took your hands in his as he directed you where to hold the guitar. “You’re strumming with this hand and holding chords on the other one.”

You tried to relax, suddenly very aware of how close he was to you. His chest pressed firmly against your back, his hands touching yours, his breath, hot against your neck as he leaned in toward you. You felt your face heat up over how ridiculous this must look, him sitting behind you like this while you struggled to remain seated on the edge of the couch. He directed you to place your fingers on certain strings, explaining that you needed to hold them just right to get the correct sound. It took some struggling for you to figure out how to do as he said with your small hands. Eventually, with some assistance, you finally had them placed just right, you focused on keeping your hand still. Billy took your other hand and brought it up slowly before helping you bring it down against the strings, a very clear and perfect note emanating from the guitar.

You smiled to yourself.

“Look at that,” Billy whispered, “you played the C chord and it was perfect.”

“You technically did it for me,’ you laughed.

Billy let go of you, freeing your hands up, “okay, now you do it.”

You placed your fingers back in the same positions that he had shown you, taking a moment to be sure that you were doing it perfectly. You brought your hand up and strummed slowly, the same sound coming from the guitar.

“Still perfect,’ Billy said as he moved from behind you to sit next to you. The movement helped you to relax, now that he wasn’t so close to you.

“Why are you being so nice to me?” You asked suddenly.

“What? Why wouldn’t I be nice to you?”

“Because no one ever is. You’re paying attention to me, trying to get to know me… I want to know why.”

“Because I think you’re someone worth getting to know,” he said with a smile, his eyes studying you fondly.

“In the history of… well, my entire life, you’re the only person who’s ever said that. Everyone hates me, why don’t you?”

“No one hates you. You just intimidate people. Hell, you intimidate me.”

“Why?”

“Because you’re too serious, you’re not very friendly, and you shut everyone out,” he answered honestly. It probably should have stung, but it really didn’t. Even you knew that it was all true, but it still didn’t sit well with you.

“When you say it like that, I do sound like a bitch.”

“You’re not though. I still don’t know you well, but I know there’s more to you.”

“I don’t want to intimidate people. I just- It’s better to not let anyone get close,” you replied.

“Life is going to be pretty sad if you go through it alone.”

“I’ve been alone for a long time,” you reminded him, “I actually think life would be sad if I continued to let people walk all over me.”

“Let me take you out again,” he said, “I’ve got an idea for a fun date. I think you’ll like it.”

“I don’t know.”

“You went out with me once already, was it terrible?” He asked. His eyes furrowed, checking to see if you had actually been that turned off by dinner with him.

“No, it was nice actually,” you said honestly.

“Then, come on, give me another shot.”

You thought about it; wondering if you really should. Sure, he was nice to you and he seemed like a decent guy. But, you were more afraid of letting yourself get into another situation that could possibly damage your career.

“Fine,” you responded finally, agreeing to seeing him again. You knew you shouldn’t, but he had a strange effect on you. You didn’t think you were actually attracted to him, but he at least listened to you. Maybe, that’s all you ever really wanted.

He smiled at you, happy that you had agreed. You thought about asking him what he had planned, but you were silenced by Rob who was now calling out to him, indicating that it was time for them to start. You looked around, realizing that the others had, at some point, came into the room too. You had been so lost in Billy that you didn’t even notice them or the time.

“Come on,” Billy said, grabbing your hand, “come hang out backstage.”

You followed him out of the room, fully aware of how everyone else was looking at the two of you. Maybe they were surprised to see you actually being a part of something, or maybe they were more concerned with the fact that you were spending time with Billy all of the sudden. Either way, it didn’t matter to you. You knew you had shown them that they might be wrong about you.

Chapter Text

For once, you had sat through the Saturday night concert with the rest of the cast. The interesting thing is, you actually enjoyed yourself. You always were a fan of music, and you had to admit that the band was pretty amazing. You made a mental note to listen to more of their songs when you had the chance, really impressed with their sound.

You were also amazed at how everyone around you seemed to be multi talented. Many of the other actors joined the band on stage, taking part in different songs and you sort of wished you had been more aware of their talent sooner. At one point, you stood of to the side of the stage, taking a moment to watch Billy, impressed at how great he was playing the guitar. You knew it took a lot of talent and patience, and the man was impressive.

After the show, Billy walked you back to your room and you chatted about the performance, only stopping once you had reached your door.

“Thanks for talking me into that. It was a lot of fun. You guys are great,” you said.

“I’m glad you had a good time,” he replied, “see, it’s okay to do something you don’t normally do sometimes.”

“I’ll keep that in mind,” you chuckled.

“I’ll see you tomorrow?”

“Hmm, actually, I leave in the morning.”

“Oh, well, maybe we can hang out when I get back to L.A. on Monday”

“No,” you said simply.

“You are so blunt. It worries me that you don’t even attempt to make the effort to let me down gently, make up some lame excuse as to why you don’t want to see me.” Billy went on, seeming hurt over your shut down.

“It’s not that,” you laughed, realizing that you came off as being your usual rude self, “I just fly to Vancouver tomorrow. I’m needed on set this week.”

“Oh.”

“But, we should definitely hang out again.”

“Really?”

“Yeah, I had a nice time with you.”

“Me too. It’s nice to get to know you better.”

“You think that until you realize one day that I really am just as lame as everyone thinks I am,” you chuckled.

“I doubt it.” He gave you a warm smile, not at all buying into the fact that you thought you were boring. “Well, I’ve got your number, you have mine. Let’s figure it out, I promised you another date.”

“Okay, you call me.”

“I will. Goodnight Y/N. Have a safe flight tomorrow.”

You watched him as he walked down the hall, noticing how your heart raced every time you even talked to him. This was new. You never felt like this just by talking to someone, especially not a guy like him. But, he was nice to you and it had been a really long time since anyone had been nice to you.


You tried to focus on work during the week you were back on set, even if you found yourself occasionally thinking of Billy for some reason. This had been the first time since being on the show that you were the one slowing down the scenes. It wasn’t like you to daydream or allow outside thoughts to take over, but Billy made you feel something that you hadn’t felt before. If only you could figure out why that was.

He had called you first, mostly just to say hi. You smiled hard when you had seen his name pop up on your phone while you sat in the chair, waiting for your hair and makeup to get done before you were needed on set. He never called with any particular thing to say, it always seemed to be just little things that he wanted to bother you with. Even if the random phone calls got annoying, you never said anything, mostly because they made you feel pretty good when they did happen.

“I’m just calling because the band is having a debate over cover songs. I want your input. Seger or Fleetwood Mac? Or, do you even listen to music?” Billy had asked one day. There was no, ‘hello, how are you?’ just a call because the band was arguing and he wanted your opinion.

“Of course I listen to music. I’m not completely dead inside.”

“Okay, which one?” He asked.

“You gave me a nearly impossible decision to make,” you told him, “Both are fantastic. But, Seger. All the way.”

“That’s my girl.” You could almost see him smile as he said it, and you felt your stomach twist at the way it sounded.

The week went on as such. Phone calls back and forth when you eventually built up the nerve to call him as well. It was never anything important, just a reason to hear each other’s voices.


After a particularly long morning of mostly dealing with Jared and Jensen goofing off on set, you had finally been sent on a break.

You walked to your trailer after you had finished lunch, hoping you could get a couple hours of sleep before you were needed back on set. As you unlocked your door and stepped inside, you were greeted by a rather large bouquet of flowers sitting on your small table. You scrunched up your face in confusion when you looked at them, wondering who they were from, and more importantly, why they were sunflowers.

No one ever sent you flowers, and you sort of imagined that the first time anyone did, it would be something romantic, like a dozen red roses; the way it is on movies and in books. You walked toward the massive bouquet, now smiling to yourself as you searched for a card or something to let you know who these might be from. You finally found it, hidden in between the large blossoms and you opened the envelope quickly.

“Maybe not what you were expecting, but these made me think of you. - Billy”

Your smile widened and your heartbeat quickened when you realized that he had actually sent you flowers. For some reason, it didn’t even matter to you that it wasn’t how you pictured it. Just the gesture alone was enough to make you feel something you haven’t ever felt before. You pulled your phone out of your pocket and immediately found his number. It rang a few times before he picked up.

“I got the flowers,” you said sweetly, still unable to wipe the smile off your face.

“Do you like them?” Billy asked. You could almost see him smile, his lips hidden behind that mess of a beard that you hated.

“They’re… nice.”

“Just nice?” He asked.

“I’ve never gotten flowers before. I didn’t realize sunflowers were a thing.”

“That’s what the florist said,” he chuckled. “But, they made me think of you.”

“Is it because I’m boring, and sunflowers are kinda boring too?” You asked, still thinking for some reason that he was making fun of you.

“You think they’re boring?”

“No, I mean, these ones are pretty. They’re so bright, and… big.”

Billy laughed, “they’re supposed to mean happiness or something.”

“Well, they made me very happy,” you replied.

“I thought of you when I saw them.”

“Hmm, now I’m questioning your motive here,” you replied with a grin. You ran your fingertips over the flowers, honestly feeling happier just looking at them.

“I assume you’re not coming back to L.A. this week,” he said, changing the subject.

“No. I think I’ll go straight to the next con by the time we get through these scenes.”

“Well, then I’ll see you there, and I haven’t forgotten that you said you’d go out with me again.”

“Yes, I know. You’ll never let me forget,” you joked.

“I’ll see you soon,” Billy said before ending the call.


When you had ended up at the next convention at your usual time, you of course ran into the usual crowd. You found yourself in the green room, ready to go over the schedule for the weekend. You couldn’t help but smile when you saw Billy.

“Hey, you,” He said happily as he moved to give you an awkward hug. In all honestly, it was you who had made it awkward. If there was one thing you were worse at than conversation, it was physical contact.

“Billy,” you said fondly, as you tried to make the hug less awkward.

“So, are you free tonight? I had our date planned and I thought it would be nice to do it before the weekend gets crazy.”

“What- yeah, I’m definitely free,” you replied. Again, you could feel everyone else’s eyes on you as the two of you spoke. “Where are we going?”

“It’s a surprise, but I think you’ll love it.”

“I hate surprises,” you responded truthfully.

“Then you’re actually going to hate it,” he grinned.


When the schedule had been discussed that evening and you were free to go, you hurried off to your room to get ready. You weren’t sure why, but you wanted to make sure that you looked nice for Billy and it sounded like he had a nice evening planned for the two of you. As you walked, Kim caught up to you, now walking alongside you. You stiffened, remembering the way she had talked about you before.

“Hey, Y/N, can I talk to you?”

“Uh, sure, but can we talk in my room?” You asked. “I have a date to get ready for.”

You continued to walk quickly, Kim right at your side when you found your room and opened the door. She followed you in hesitantly, watching as you immediately went to freshening up and changing into something more appropriate for a date.

Kim never said a word, just watched you silently as you rushed around, and finally began touching up your makeup after you were dressed and you had on your heels.

“Are you really going to wear that?” Kim asked, looking you up and down.

“What? What’s wrong with my outfit?” You felt nervous now. It’s not like you overdressed, but you still wanted to look nice for Billy. “It’s casual, right?”

“No, you look really great,” she replied, “I mean, the jeans are great… the top is a little dressy… and those shoes…”

“What is wrong with my shoes?” You asked, wondering why you were even listening to her to begin with.

“They’re… tall.”

“I always wear shoes with heels, I’m short if you haven’t noticed, especially next to him.”

“I’m not judging your heels, you always look amazing,” Kim promised, “But if I know Billy, and I do, he’s got something a little… different planned.”

“What do you mean?” You asked as you applied your lipstick.

“You should probably value comfort over fashion tonight. Don’t you have a t-shirt and some simpler shoes?”

“I do have a t-shirt!” You exclaimed, scrambling for your bag to find one, “and I brought some Converse.”

“Good, go with that,” Kim chuckled.

“What do you think he has planned?” You asked breathlessly as you changed again. You were suddenly nervous and sort of wondering why Kim was helping you in the first place. “I was expecting dinner and drinks.”

“I’m sure there will be dinner and drinks, he’s still a gentleman. But, don’t be surprised if you go do something fun.” Kim smiled at you softly as she watched you. You definitely noticed, and it made you slightly uncomfortable.

“Like, what kind of fun?” You asked as you sat on the edge of your bed. You tossed your heels aside, slipping on some socks and then your Converse, already feeling under-dressed and awkward.

“I don’t know; he likes music and stuff. He’s also pretty laid back, but he’s a lot of fun. I just recommend not trying so hard.”

“Last time he just took me to dinner.”

“Yeah, but he also specifically stated that it was a dinner date. This one is just a date, right?”

“Yeah. He didn’t specify.”

“I’d assume he has something else planned then. Best to be prepared.”

“Okay, thanks Kim,” you grinned as you looked at yourself in the mirror, fussing with your hair.

“Hey, Y/N? I just wanted to apologize for last time. I shouldn’t have been talking about you like that. That was pretty horrible of me.”

“It’s nothing. My feelings don’t get hurt easily.”

“Still, that was wrong of me, especially when I don’t even know you.”

“It’s my own fault that no one knows me. It’s my own fault that people think of me the way that they do,” you began, trying to ease her mind. You knew that she meant no harm by it, most people usually didn’t. ”I’m really trying to be better though. I hope you guys can see that.”

“We do. We’ve noticed. Billy seems to bring out the best in you.”

“I feel like a different person, and I’ve only just gotten to know him,” you said honestly. Not only have you been feeling happier the past few weeks, but you also noticed that you felt friendlier. Normally, if someone was talking about you behind your back the way Kim had done, you certainly wouldn’t be sitting here having a conversation with them and taking their advice.

“I’m glad. He seems to like you, and I don’t know, maybe you like him to.”

“I do. He’s very sweet and he listens to me, you know? No one has ever tried to get to know me. No one has ever listened to me before.”

“He’s a really good guy,” Kim reminded you, “just… go have fun.”

“I will,” you beamed, “thanks again Kim.”


This was not at all your idea of a date. As you arrived, you looked at Billy; questioning whether this was a joke. Your heart dropped when you realized he was, in fact, serious.

“You up for this?” Billy asked, eyebrows raised, a cocky grin plastered on his face, almost as if he were challenging you.

“Not really,” you said honestly, “I’ve never done this before.” Despite the fact that you didn’t expect this and you really felt like now would be the moment when you should turn and run from him, you found yourself unable to do so.

“Me neither,” he replied.

“Why do I get the feeling that you’re lying to me?”

“I’m not,” he grinned wider, “I would never lie to you.”

“See, I still can’t tell if you’re lying.”

He only continued to grin at you as you both suited up. There were a few other people, mostly younger kids preparing to play as well. You noticed that you and Billy had somehow ended up in separate colors, meaning that you wouldn’t even be on the same team.

“Wait,” you said, “we’re not on the same team?”

“No, it’s more exciting this way.”


You felt sort of ridiculous in the get-up, carrying around a plastic phaser gun, and looking around to see that your teammates were probably each half your age at least. This was not your idea of a nice first date, but it was something that Billy had come up with. You had to admit, you really liked the guy, and maybe you could set aside your pride for one night and let him talk you into doing something silly. You sat through the video that explained the rules and how to play, sort of bored as your team discussed, very seriously, their strategy. You were basically chosen to protect the base; because, as one kid had put it, “it’s easier for the old one to just stand in one spot.”

You scoffed at him, knowing perfectly well that you had your fair share of training with weaponry just from being on film and T.V. sets. It may all be make-believe, but at least you knew what you were doing. It was simple really, aim for the sensors and fire; avoid being hit, and keep the other team from taking down your base.

When it was time to actually play the game, you thought you felt a surge of adrenaline rush through you, which was unusual since you really didn’t participate in games like this. You felt sort of embarrassed to even be here, sure that you would go home after this date and probably never want to see Billy again. You realized very suddenly that he wasn’t your type. You were always very serious; you took your job and yourself seriously. You knew you were too old for things like this, when you should be out meeting a serious man who valued the same things that you did. Billy came off as the serious type, but right now, you realized that he might be a bit too immature for you. After all, there were far better ways you could be spending your Friday night.

Some time into the game, you did as you were instructed, hanging around the base, occasionally stunning the guys from the other team who had made their way to you. With each hit you landed, you were just as amazed as them with how good your aim was.

You hung out for some time, bored and unamused, when you finally saw Billy for the first time since the game had started. Not one to mess around, even when it came to this stupid game, you took aim as soon as you saw him, and hit one of his shoulder sensors in one shot.

“Hey!” He called out, looking down at his vest that was now flashing, indicating that he was stunned for a few minutes.

“I forgot to warn you, I’m a really good shot,” you grinned.

He glanced up at you, smiling playfully before making his way toward you.

“You can’t move,” you warned, aiming again, “you’re supposed to be stunned.”

“Oh, trust me, I am,” he said.

“Want me to shoot again?”

“I think someone is having fun,” he replied, still moving closer to you.

“This is actually really lame, but I also don’t like to lose.”

“Neither do I,” Billy said softly. He was now directly in front of you, his face inches from yours as he continued to grin. You realized that you had dropped your arms down, letting the phaser hang loosely in your hand. Your heart began to race, suddenly nervous over how close he was to you.

“You’re not supposed to move,” you said softly, eyeing those lips that were dangerously close to your own..

“Are you sure?” He asked coyly. He leaned in closer then, lips ghosting your own as your breath hitched.

You nodded as you watched him. He gave you one more smile before finally leaning in, his lips pressing against yours gently at first. He waited, taking note of your reaction, which at first was that of complete shock. His lips were soft and his beard tickled your face. You thought you might be put off by the idea of kissing him, but everything inside of you began to react wildly to the sensation. You parted your lips carefully, pressing into him just a bit harder as he deepened the kiss. You felt him reach his free hand up to your face, letting his fingertips caress your cheek as he kissed you. You were lost then; head buzzing, heart racing, breathing becoming more erratic as you let him kiss you harder. You finally moved to wrap your arms around his waist, pulling him closer as he backed you up against a wall. The noise around you disappeared, the flashing lights of his stupid vest blinking dimly behind your closed eyes. There was a lot going on and your senses were overwhelmed now.

Almost as soon as the kiss became heated, he pulled back from you, breaking contact only to rest his forehead against yours. You breathed heavily, still dizzy and still overwhelmed. No one had ever kissed you like that before. You opened your eyes, now meeting his gaze. He watched you, still with that sly grin on his face.

“Guess what?” He said as he watched you struggle to regain your composure. You only looked at him questioningly, unable to form words. He pulled away from you, moving back a step as he pulled his phaser up to you, aiming point blank at the sensor of your vest. You suddenly noticed that the sensor on his vest had stopped blinking; he was no longer stunned and very much back in the game.

“Wait!” You shouted. It was too late. He pulled his trigger, instantly stunning you. You watched as the lights of your vest flashed, completely caught off guard. You looked back up at him as he shrugged at you. Before you could object, he had turned from you completely, racing off to attack your base.

“You fucker,” you muttered under your breath.


“You deliberately diverted my attention so that you could win,” you spat as you hurried down the sidewalk. Billy took short strides, keeping up with you as you walked without any real destination. You only knew that you were mad and you wanted to get away from him to avoid anymore humiliation.

“Maybe,” he grinned, “you’re not mad are you?”

“I’m a little mad,” you said honestly. It was one thing to draw your opponents attention elsewhere to gain the upper hand, but the fact that he had kissed you like that just to win the game left you feeling gross. For a brief moment, you thought that you might have actual feelings for the man, but that quickly changed when he decided to use that kiss as a distraction.

“You’re mad that I won? Or you’re mad that I kissed you?”

“Both. You shouldn’t have done that. That wasn’t fair at all.”

“Why not?”

“You don’t just kiss someone to win a stupid game,” you felt tears well up in your eyes as you realized that you had actually been really into that kiss and he had treated it like a joke, a way to pick on you.

“Well, what if I really wanted to win… but I also really wanted to kiss you?”

“You’re such an ass.”

“I’m sorry,” he laughed, “you’re right. I went about that all wrong.”

He grabbed your hand, stopping you suddenly. He pulled you gently toward him, until you were standing face to face again.

“Let me make it up to you,” he said softly. He leaned in again, and you felt the same sensations from before; excitement over the idea of him kissing you again, electricity shooting through you just at the way his hand felt holding yours, maybe a little bit of fear.

“H-how do you plan to do that?” You asked, catching yourself as you stared at his lips that were nearly hidden beneath that damn beard.

“I mean, I really did want to kiss you. I shouldn’t have used it as a distraction. Can I kiss you again, for real this time?”

You paused, considering his offer. The kiss during the game had been exciting, even if you did feel that it was done out of spite so that he could win. You hated that you felt this way right now; very much attracted to him, even if he wasn’t your type; and very much wanting him to kiss you again, even if you were pissed at him.

You were unable to form words, you only stood there in a stupor as you kept your eyes on his mouth as he leaned down toward you again. You wanted to push him away, to not let him get the upper hand again, but you slowly tilted your face up toward his until your lips met again. It was the same feeling as before. Your pulse quickened, head spinning as he kissed you deeply. You moved your hands up against his chest as he drew you in closer. You wanted more of him. Even in that moment, the sensation of that beard rubbing against your face as he kissed you no longer bothered you. Maybe beards weren’t such a turn-off after all. Eventually, you were on tiptoes, arms now resting along his shoulders as you strained to keep contact with him.

You kissed for a long time, standing right there in the middle of a busy sidewalk. You never saw yourself as one who would ever partake in PDA, but for once in your life, you really didn’t care what anyone thought of you.

Chapter Text

Billy walked you back to your room that night and you were still in a daze over the way he had kissed you. You could feel yourself blushing as he walked with you, hand in hand, until he got you back to your door safely.

“I had a great time,” he said as he stood with you, still gripping your hand.

“Surprisingly, I did as well.”

“Not what you expected?”

“Not at all,” you laughed, “no one has ever taken me to do something completely random like that as a date, ever.”

“Like I said, it’s okay to have a little fun every once in awhile.”

“Yeah, sometimes I forget what it is to have fun.”

“But you did?” He asked, raising a brow.

“I did. I honestly did.”

“Good, I’m glad.”

“Hey, do you want to come in?” You asked suddenly. You had been thinking about inviting him in since you stepped foot back into the hotel, but you still felt awkward and really didn’t want to give him the wrong impression.

“Really?” He asked. He narrowed his eyes, sort of surprised that you had even asked.

“I mean, just to talk. It’s still pretty early and we were so busy trying to win that damn game, we didn’t really get to talk.”

“Sure, I’d like that.”

“Okay,” you replied as you fished your room key out of your bag. You were shaking now, trying to not look so nervous as you let yourself in, “just to talk,” you reminded him.

“I get it,” he chuckled.

Once you were both inside, you each discarded your jackets on a chair. Billy smiled at you as he took a seat on the couch. You couldn’t believe that you were here with him now. You watched him, aware of the fact that he had a completely different effect on you than you expected. You had invited him in, and now you stood there, unsure of what to do next.

You were generally not one to invite people over, mostly because you just didn’t have friends and you didn’t date. You had been alone for so long, you had forgotten what to do in instances like this.

Luckily, Billy seemed to read you pretty well right now and he tried to ease your nervousness, just smiling at you as he patted the spot next to him on the couch. You shyly went to him, sitting next to him stiffly. Sure, the man had kissed you tonight, twice; but you were still at a loss of how to act around him.

“Are you okay?” He asked.

“I’m fine.” The words came out sort of choked, as if you also had forgotten how to speak suddenly. You had gotten to know him a bit over time, and you usually felt surprisingly comfortable with him, but he had kissed you. You weren’t sure what it had meant or if you were supposed to let it happen again. You felt like an idiot, a child. You had no clue how to handle this stuff and you were certain he would catch on to the fact that not only were you antisocial, but you were also extremely awkward in general. It was a part of you that you tried to hide. You played the part of the serious one pretty well, but your ignorance to social situations wasn’t something you were proud of. The best you could do in any given moment was to act as if you were just a jerk to avoid being social.

You didn’t want to be that way with him though. You didn’t want to show him your uncaring and cold side. The moment that you invited him in was the moment that you realized that you actually liked him. The problem now was that you didn’t know what to do with the feelings of being into someone.

“You seem uncomfortable,” he pointed out.

“I am,” you said honestly, “I don’t usually have people over.”

“I can leave if you’d like,” he offered. He tilted his head, staring at you, “I don’t want to make you uncomfortable.”

“You don’t. I just- I don’t really know what to do with all of this.”

“All of what?”

“Having you here, the way you’re so nice to me…” you trailed off.

“The kissing?” He said with a grin.

“That too.”

“You act as if you’ve never been kissed before.”

You felt your face redden even more, now embarrassed over the fact that you were just that lame and he knew it. You met his gaze, waiting for him to realize how pathetic you were.

“Wait, you had that boyfriend you talked about,” he said when he realized he may have touched on a sensitive topic.

“Of course,” you replied, “of course we kissed. I like to think that not all of it was fake.”

“Aside from that loser, you had to have had other guys in your life. I mean, from the way you made it sound, that ended a long time ago.”

“Oh, yeah. Like I said, I was young and we only dated for a few months. That was…” you scrunched your face up, trying to think back that far, “seven years ago? I did date, but none of that was ever really serious.”

“Why not?”

“I don’t know. No one ever showed me much interest, and the ones who did just… weren’t very nice.”

“I find that very hard to believe.”

“Come on Billy, we both know that everyone knows I am impossible to like. It shouldn’t be so surprising that I don’t have guys chasing me.”

“You’re very beautiful,” he responded as he continued to stare at you. You felt your stomach drop. It certainly wasn’t the first time anyone had told you that you were beautiful, and it was no surprise to you that hearing him say it didn’t turn you into a blushing schoolgirl like it should have. In fact, hearing him say it only made you think twice about how you were feeling about him. You couldn’t even thank him for the compliment, because to you, it wasn’t a compliment. It was simply him seeing you the way everyone else did. A pretty face with no real personality.

You forced yourself to smile at him and he immediately realized he had said something wrong.

“I’m sorry. I insulted you somehow.”

“No, no you didn’t. I just- I didn’t realize that that was why you asked me out.”

“What?”

“It makes sense now,” you mumbled, “I mean, I have a pretty terrible personality, I knew that all of this was because you liked the way I looked, I just- I shouldn’t have ignored that.”

“Will you stop talking about yourself like that?” Billy said, looking annoyed, “I’m not here just because I think you’re beautiful, which you are, but I actually like you.”

“Why?”

“Why do you have to question everything?”

“I don’t know…” you mumbled, “you really don’t know me.” It was true, you didn’t know why you constantly questioned his motives. All you did know was that you had spent so long having people point out that you were either; rude, boring, or uninteresting; it threw you off that he was here, showing genuine interest in you.

“Hey, we had a nice conversation on our first date, we’ve been talking and getting to know each other, and I think we had fun tonight.”

“Yeah, we did.”

“I’ve learned enough about you so far to know that I do like you. I think you’re a lot kinder and more interesting than you give yourself credit for.”

“Thank you.”

“What about me? You’re the one who said I am really not your type, I thought for sure I was gonna get slapped for kissing you.”

“You’re not my type,” you replied, “you are not at all like anyone that I have ever dated or been interested in. And, I did think about pushing you away when you kissed me.”

“But you didn’t.”

You shook your head, leaning toward him without really realizing what you were doing.

“You told me that you thought my beard was gross,” he said softly.

You nodded, acknowledging that you had actually told him that many times before tonight.

“You constantly tell me to stop calling you so much,” he continued.

“Because you call me when I’m working.”

“You also said that the flowers I sent to you were ‘nice’.”

“I’ve just never gotten flowers before.”

“What are you thinking about all of this? You know I like you, but I’m not so sure what you’re thinking.”

“I’m thinking about kissing you again,” you replied. You had leaned in very close to him now, drawn to him even though everything in you didn’t want to be.

He leaned in now, reaching a hand up to brush your hair back behind your ear as he let his lips meet yours. You sort of hoped that it might feel different, give you a reason to not be so interested in him anymore. But you were overcome with the same feeling as before.

You sighed, pressing your mouth against his just a bit harder. You involuntarily brought your hand to his leg, letting it rest against his thigh. Even though you were kissing, you wanted more contact with him. He didn’t let his hand leave your face as he pulled you in as close as he could. You let yourself get lost in that kiss, able to enjoy it more now that you were alone.

“I have to admit,” he began as the kiss ended, “I was not expecting you.”

“What do you mean?” you asked softly, still dizzy after that kiss.

“I honestly expected you to be exactly what everyone else thinks you are. But, you’re not like that girl at all.”

“I think it’s just you,” you said carefully, “I think I’m just different with you.”

“Oh?” He inquired with a smirk.

“You know that I wasn’t expecting you either. I thought you’d be like everyone else.”

“Hey, I’m pretty unexpected,” he laughed, “and I also believe in getting to know someone before writing them off.”

“To be fair, everyone else here is super nice and they’ve all tried to get to know me. I just blew them off for far too long, they don’t like me now.”

“Hey, we should all hang out together. If you want to. I mean, they’re all awesome, I think you’d like them if you tried to get to know them. And, they’d like you if you let them get to know you.”

“I think that would be nice,” you smiled at him. It wasn’t like you at all to try to get to know anyone. You had spent so much time on your own and liked the idea of not complicating your life with getting close to other people. But, you very much wanted to get to know Billy even more; and if that mean getting to know your cast-mates in the process, you figured you could give it a shot.


The following day, you got up for the first day of the con; not as bright and early as you usually did. You and Billy had stayed up late, just talking and maybe making out more. Even today, you headed down to the convention area, smiling as you replayed last night in your mind.

It had been almost unreal to you. For the first time in a very long time, you felt like you finally had someone who genuinely liked you and actually wanted to be around you. Of course, it was slightly awkward, since you weren’t sure how to act around him still. But, you decided that you would just have to learn how to let people in. For him, you were willing to do just that.

“Wow, someone’s in a good mood this morning.” You heard Rob speak when you entered the green room, obviously noticing that you were smiling ear to ear.

“Good morning guys,” you responded, addressing everyone in the room. You may have looked at Billy too long as you greeted everyone. You felt yourself blush, trying to not make it too obvious that you were mostly interested in him.

It appeared that everyone noticed though. There were smirks all around and sideways glances in you and Billy’s direction from almost everyone. You assumed that most of them knew that you and Billy had gone out, but you were sure they didn’t know details. At least, Billy didn’t seem like the kind of guy to kiss and tell.

The two of you exchanged knowing glances, while everyone else sort of sat there uncomfortably.

“Should I even ask?” Rob said, suddenly breaking the tension of the awkward situation.

“What do you mean?” You asked, forcing your eyes away from Billy.

“I mean, should we leave you two alone or something?”

“What? No!” You replied, brushing it off as if he didn’t know what he was talking about.

“Okay, then can you maybe not look at each other like that? That was a little weird.”

You felt embarrassed, knowing that the thought of you and Billy being interested in each other would weird everyone out. After all, they didn’t like you, and they very much liked Billy. Your good mood quickly soured when you realized how uncomfortable they all seemed to be at the thought of you and Billy being friendly with each other, and you knew from past experience that the only thing you could do now was to defend yourself and get away from their stares.

“What is going on with you two anyway?” Briana asked, looking at you suspiciously. You looked at her, now fully aware that maybe more people knew about the two of you than you originally thought.

“Wh-what?” You stuttered, glancing to Billy for help. Billy watched you, keeping quiet at he seemed to let you fend for yourself now.

“You two hung out last night, and now you’re just being weird,” she replied

“I don’t know what you’re talking about,” you said sternly, “all I did was say good morning, I’m sorry I even tried to be nice.”

You turned on your heels, walking away from everyone as quickly as you could. You knew better than to try to play nice, there was a reason that you hardly talked to these people; and that reason was because you knew they’d judge you. Even worse, you walked away feeling called out by the way that both you and Billy had looked at each other; and even though you were visibly uncomfortable, Billy hadn’t said a word about it. You didn’t expect him to defend you or say anything, but a part of you sort of hoped he would.

You decided that it was a stupid idea; being interested in him. No one would approve and you couldn’t blame them. You didn’t want anyone to know about how things had gone on your date, and you certainly didn’t want anyone to know about your developing feelings for him.


You continued to mope for most of the day, purposely avoiding Billy, and sort of kicking yourself over your outburst. You could tell right away that Rob and Briana had been joking; most likely trying to figure out what was going on between you and Billy. You had felt uneasy by the way they had singled you out, making jokes about the fact that you may had looked at Billy a little more friendlier than usual. You hated the way everyone else stared at you and judged you. You knew this was just their way of interacting with each other; making jokes and trying to embarrass each other. But, you were always on the outside. You were ignored for the most part, never having to fall victim to the incessant joking between the rest of them. So, when you were directly called out and had attention drawn to you like that, you didn’t know how to act.

You sighed heavily as you sat at the autograph table, noticing how long the line was even though you very much wanted to be done for the day. You put on a smile anyway, having learned very quickly that at least pretending to be happy got you a lot further with the fans at these conventions. If you didn’t want them talking badly about you on social media, you at least act as if you want to be here.

Some time later, you had finally finished up; grateful to finally be done for the day. You had managed to stay pretty busy, not running into Billy, aside from when the band introduced your panel; and you also managed to avoid your co-workers. You had been embarrassed earlier by the way Rob and Briana had pointed out the way you and Billy looked at each other. Why? You couldn’t be sure. But you mostly tried to push back the thought that Billy might only be interested in hanging out with you because of the way you looked or maybe to even make fun of you. You hated feeling like this. You hadn’t put yourself in a situation like this in a very long time. Honestly, you had hoped you had learned your lesson last time.

“Hey, Y/N,” you heard a voice call out to you. You were headed for the rooms, anxious to just lock yourself away and continue to avoid everyone. You turned toward the voice, rolling your eyes when you saw Billy approaching you. You ignored him, trying to walk away a little faster but the man was tall and was able to catch up to you quickly.

“What do you want?” You mumbled.

“”You’ve avoided me all day for some reason, I just wanted to make sure we were okay.”

“Okay?” You asked as you glared at him. “Your friends embarrassed me in front of everyone and you didn’t say anything about it.”

“How did they embarrass you?”

“They pointed out to everyone the way we looked at each other.”

“Okay?”

“You weren’t embarrassed?”

“No, they was joking. That’s what normal people do… make jokes sometimes.”

“I feel like they were pointing out how I have no business looking at you that way. Like, they both disapprove of the two of us.”

“Wait a minute, how were you looking at me?” He asked, a grin forming on his lips.

“I-I don’t know,” you muttered, “I just smiled at you, I was happy to see you after…”

You trailed off, now feeling shy over the thought of the night before.

“After all the making out last night?” He finished your sentence, still grinning.

“Maybe.”

“They didn’t mean anything by it,” Billy reiterated. He grabbed your hand, pulling you so that you’d stop and face him. “Y/N, no one is going to disapprove of us,” he said softly.

“I didn’t mean… that there’s an ‘us’.” You replied. You didn’t want to go there really, but the words had slipped out regardless. You had only just started to get to know the man, but you found yourself thinking about him often. It had been a very long time since you had ever been in a relationship with someone, and even your last couple were questionable. You still had no idea how to act around him, and he made you nervous.

“So, all of that kissing is… nothing?” He asked carefully.

“I didn’t say that,” you replied. You glanced down at your shoes, feeling your face grow hot.

“You know I Iike you, right?”

“I know,” you said, “you’ve told me before. But, you still didn’t say anything when Rob and Briana were teasing.”

“I didn’t know if I should,” Billy replied. “I mean, is it my place to stick up for you? You’re so damn independent and you never let anyone mess with you. You also just said, there isn’t an us. I wasn’t sure if I should make a big deal out of it or if you even wanted anyone to know that there’s obviously something going on here.”

“Well, they were calling both of us out,” you added, “they saw the way we looked at each other. I think they know there’s something here and I don’t think they like it.”

“I think you’re reading too much into what they say. And I’d also like to know, what are we exactly?” He asked, searching your expression for a hint at what exactly it was that the two of you were doing at this point.

You weren’t sure how to answer him. You liked him, that much was obvious to you. However, you didn’t like other people knowing that.

“I don’t know,” you replied.

“I just, think we should figure out what this is before I step in and try to stop anyone from assuming anything.”

“I don’t want people to know that we’ve been spending so much time together,” you blurted out. Billy narrowed his eyes at you, unsure of how to take that.

“Are you embarrassed of me now?”

“No,” you replied, “I just- I see how all your friends look at me and the idea of us spending time together really makes them uneasy. I don’t want them to know that we’ve been talking and seeing each other as much as we have.”

“Can I tell them about all the making out?” He grinned.

You rolled your eyes at him, “Please, Billy… I’m not trying to be rude. I would just like to keep spending time with you without worrying what they’re all thinking of me.”

“You know they all know that we went out, right?” He raised his brows at you, making sure to let the fact sink in.

“I know that, but they don’t know details about it… do they?” You said accusingly.

“I would never kiss and tell,” he smiled. “Some of them also know we’ve been talking on the phone and stuff.”

“That’s fine,” you replied, “so, they know we’re getting along anyway. Can we just keep the rest of it quiet for now?”

“I want to do whatever you feel comfortable with,” he said.

You considered his words. A part of you wanted to be able to see where this could go with him. But, you also didn’t want to be too open with it. You knew your co-workers didn’t like you and you couldn’t imagine how they would react knowing that you might be forming some kind of relationship with one of their own. Kim hadn’t seemed too displeased upon knowing you were going out with him, but even she didn’t know details about what went on. You knew that a few of them just assumed Billy was being nice to you and hanging out with you.

“Let’s keep hanging out,” you said finally, “but maybe keep it to ourselves for awhile, at least until we decide what it all means.”

Billy chuckled, nodding slightly at you. “If that’s what you want, fine.”

“I think it would be better this way.”

“Can I still kiss you?” He asked. You smiled at him, glancing around to make sure no one else was around. When you noticed you were in the clear; you grabbed a hold of his shirt, pulling him down to meet his lips with yours. Again, you sort of hated the beard at first, but you melted into the way you felt when your lips pressed against his.

“Can I see you tonight?” You asked as you pulled away from him, still looking around to make sure you had kept your privacy.

“Yeah,” he replied, “I’ll let you know when we’re done for the day and I can sneak away.”

You blushed at the thought of sneaking away to be with him, suddenly feeling very excited over the idea of it.

“I’ll call you,” he said as you moved away from him, putting distance between the two of you so that no one would catch you. You reached into your pocket then, grasping your spare key card and pausing for a moment as you considered whether this was a good idea or not. You didn’t think too hard about it, and you promptly took the key, slipping it into his back pocket, trying hard to seem inconspicuous.

“Or, just come by my room,” you said quietly. His smile widened and he nodded his head in understanding.

“I can do that,” he replied.

Chapter Text

Just as promised, Billy did sneak away. It was Friday night, which meant that the rest of the cast would be getting ready for karaoke; something that the rest of the band didn’t take part in. You were grateful for that, since it meant it was easier for Billy to have an excuse to get away to come see you. No one would think it was strange for you to not be there either, since the extra stuff at the conventions were not things that you bothered with.

You heard the soft knock at your door first, then you heard the key card open the lock and the door opened.

“It’s me,” Billy called out, “is it okay for me to come in?”

You laughed, feeling excited now that he was here. “Just get in here,” you demanded.

You watched him as he entered your room, closing the door behind him. You didn’t want to come off as too excited to see him, but you couldn’t stop yourself from approaching him and pulling him down to you for a kiss. He smiled against your lips, his beard scratching your face. It was definitely something you would have to get used to since he really seemed to like his beard.

“What’s the plan tonight?” You asked eagerly as you wrapped your arms around him.

“I didn’t have one,” he laughed, “was I supposed to make plans?”

“I don’t know, isn’t that what guys do when they’re dating someone?”

“We’re dating?”

“Well, hanging out, but sorta dating.”

“Sorry to disappoint you, but I didn’t make plans.”

“Oh.”

“I thought we were just hanging out. Maybe we can watch some TV together, order room service, make out all night.”

“Well, that does sound like a plan,” you smiled.

“Is that okay? I get the feeling that you sort of expected more from me.”

“No, it’s okay. I just- I’m so used to having every minute of my life scheduled. It weird to… just hang out.”

After a brief argument over what movie you would watch; you wanted something rom-com and he was eyeing a new suspense flick; you eventually won and you both settled down in your bed. You had ordered room service, now just waiting for it to arrive. You snuggled against him, feeling strangely out of place as you did so. You hadn’t had anyone spend time with you like this, much less in your bed in forever. He was comforting, and you liked the way you fit against him. He had his arm wrapped around your shoulders, so that you could rest against him.

“I can’t believe you talked me into letting you watch this.”

“I told you I’d win,” you smirked. You weren’t really used to getting your way, and Billy was no exception to that. He had argued with you for quite some time, fully defending his choice in movie; and although you had been caught off guard over the fact that he even tried to sway your vote, you were surprised that you had won with him. He wasn’t like other people in your life. Mostly, you were told what to do, where to be and when, and how to act and what to say. Most of your life was determined by someone else and it was nice to finally feel as if you had a voice.

“Of course you win,” he grinned at you, those gorgeous eyes meeting yours, “you’re too cute for me to not let you have your way.”

“I don’t get to sit around and watch movies,” you started, “I’m usually too busy.”

“Really? What about every karaoke and SNS night when you’re hiding in your room avoiding everyone?”

“I’m usually sleeping. Or, if it’s early, I’m reading scripts or emails.”

“You ever do anything fun?’

You thought hard about it for a second. “No. I really don’t.”

“Okay, I feel less bitter about letting you win this one.”

Halfway into the movie; Billy had moved in for a kiss. You felt your heart race, your stomach twist, the usual feelings of excitement taking over. You hoped your breath didn’t smell, considering that you had both just eaten dinner when room service finally arrived. You had actually been really into the movie. It was different to watch a film rather than work on one.

His lips found yours, beard scratching against your skin; a sensation that you weren’t sure you could ever get used to, but those lips kept you coming back for more.

He kissed you gently at first, the way he had the last time you had kissed. You really loved the way it felt, and you eagerly parted your lips for him, wanting more. At no point before had the kissing ever gotten too intense. Tonight, was different. He kissed you harder after you moaned against his mouth, the overwhelming feelings you were having taking over by this point. He pressed you against the bed, moving so that he was nearly on top of you. His hands wandered, touching and caressing your face and neck. It was all very nice, and it was also a bit too much. He let his hand work it’s way up your shirt and you secretly panicked. You didn’t want to seem like a prude, so you let him continue until you felt that maybe this was going too far.

“Billy,” you mumbled as you turned your face from his. You grasped onto his shoulders, pressing slightly to cue him in on the fact that this needed to slow down.

“I’m sorry, that was too much.”

“A little, yeah.”

“I’m keeping my hands to myself from now on,” he grinned.

“You don’t have to do that,” you chuckled as you cuddled closer to him. Just the feeling of having him close to you was relaxing. “I just think we should take it a bit slower is all.”

“God, I’m an idiot. I didn’t mean to get carried away.”

“It’s okay,”

“No, it’s not. I shouldn’t have assumed that you wanted to go further.”

“Hey, I like you, and I like being with you. Um, but we just need to slow down. If that’s okay.”

“Yeah, of course it is.”

“It’s just… it’s been a really long time for me.”

You could see his eyebrow raise in suspicion behind his glasses, questioning how long it had actually been since you had been with anyone.

“Actually, I’ve never… um. I haven’t done… that… like, ever.”

His expression changed quickly; from questioning, to one of complete shock.

“Shut up,” he laughed, “you don’t have to lie to me. If you’re not ready to be with me like that, it’s fine.”

“Okay, but I’m not lying,” you said softly. You were embarrassed now, thinking that it was probably a bad idea to even mention it to him. You had barely gotten to know him and you hadn’t been hanging out with him for very long. You thought for a moment that whatever trust you had in him may have been misplaced.

“You’re telling me that you’re a virgin?” He asked, looking shocked.

“Jesus, can you keep your voice down?”

“No one else is here, Y/N.” he chuckled.

“You’re really laughing at me? This is funny to you? Is it really that big of a deal?”

“Oh my god, you really are serious,” he laughed.

You shoved him away from you completely. Now you were humiliated. You never thought it was a big deal, hell, you figured some men would actually enjoy the thought of it. Now, he was laughing at you as if you were pathetic. You felt your face flush, and you knew now that you never should have trusted him that much.

“I’m sorry,” he called out to you as you stood up from the bed. He was still laughing slightly and it was making your blood boil. “It’s not a big deal.”

“Why are you laughing at me then?”

“I just- you surprised me is all.”

“Did I read that wrong?” You asked defensively. “We’re you not trying to sleep with me just now?”

“Well, yeah. Maybe I was hinting in that direction. I definitely would if you let me. I just didn’t expect you to tell me something like that.”

“I’m pathetic aren’t I?” You asked, looking at him sadly. “I really am just as lame as everyone thinks I am.”

“No, you’re not. It’s really not a big deal. I just, maybe didn’t expect it from you.”

“Why?”

“I mean, come on. You’re pretty famous, and you’re gorgeous. I’m sure I’m not the only one who thinks that you’ve had your share of Hollywood guys who can’t get enough of you.”

“I had, like, one boyfriend. And even that wasn’t real,” you reminded him.

“You really never slept with him?”

You shook your head, “No. I have this thing called dignity. It might not be obvious, but it’s there. I would never sleep with someone who was paid to date me.”

“I just find it hard to believe that you didn’t have at least one lucky guy hit that.”

You rolled your eyes at him, unamused at his jokes.

“You know, I’d appreciate it if you didn’t go around telling everyone that I work with about this. They all hate me enough as it is, I don’t need them to have another joke about me to fuel the fire.”

“I would never discuss our conversations with anyone, especially not something like this.”

“Because you’re embarrassed now?”

“Because you just shared a really personal thing with me,” he said softly. “And, for the record, it doesn’t bother me. At all.”

“Really? You don’t think I’m pathetic?”

“No. I think you’re amazing, and pretty, and I like you.” He stood up from the bed, moving toward you as you remained in one spot, still upset over his reaction. He put a hand under your chin, tilting your face up toward his as he leaned in for a soft kiss. “It’s really not a big deal to me.”

“I just- I like you too. And I want to see where this could go with us. But you need to know that I don’t give myself away freely, which is why I made you stop. It’s not a religious thing or anything like that; it’s just- I have so many people controlling every part of my life, there’s not much left for me to have control over. I can at least control who I let in and how much I let them get to know me.”

“That’s admirable.”

“Can we maybe drop it for now?” You asked. “We’ve only started spending time together, I don’t think it needs to be discussed anymore right now.”

“You got it,” he smiled, “I’ll make sure I slow down.”

“Thank you.”

He turned from you, going back to the bed where he plopped himself back down in his spot. He grinned back to you, motioning for you to join him.

“You’re not running out the door?” You pointed out.

“No,” he replied, looking confused. “We haven’t finished your movie.”

You hesitantly moved to join him. You thought for sure your awkward revelation would send him running; possibly to his friends so he could tell them how lame you were. But, he was willing to stay, and you weren’t about to question it too much more. You took your place next to him and he let you snuggle up against him, the two of you turning back to the movie in silence.

The evening had gone well. Mostly, you both ended up ignoring the movie that you had insisted you watch. He never once brought back up what you had told him, and you were grateful for it. You never went through life thinking it was a big deal, but you knew that other’s might think it was sad and depressing to meet an adult woman who had never had sex before. You had made the mistake of telling someone this before, namely the boyfriend that wasn’t even your real boyfriend. You thought teasing ended once you were out of school, but you had been wrong. You were just thankful that there had been a confidentiality agreement in place during all of that, and the man never said a word about how pathetic you were to the press.

Billy was definitely different though. He still laid here with you, not afraid to hold you and let his fingers graze along your back as you pressed against him. He had been nothing but kind to you; even if you knew that you weren’t his type and that you were definitely not the easiest person to get along with. Maybe your secrets, even the embarrassing ones, weren’t something you had to hide from him.

You spent a lot of time talking and getting to know each other more. You learned more about him and the things that he was interested in, he talked about his family and friends; and when you talked more about yourself, you couldn’t help but realize that the two of you were far more different than you had originally thought.

You didn’t really share similar interests, and your personalities didn’t seem that they’d work well together. He seemed a lot more laid back and quiet in his own way. You were usually high-strung and the only reason you were deemed quiet was because you hated talking to people. He was obviously a lot more social and he had a lot of friends, which he made easily. People were generally drawn to him. You, on the other hand, seemed to scare people away, and you generally liked to be left alone. You didn’t let people in easily, and in all honesty, the fact that you were here with Billy after only just getting to know him left you feeling just as shocked as everyone else seemed by it. But, here you were; genuinely interested in getting to know him and spend time with him. You had never smiled so much in your life, and you had never let anyone in like this before. You had never felt this way about anyone.

The film had been all but forgotten; and at some point you must have dozed off. It wasn’t until the following morning that you realized that Billy had slept over.

You woke up, still wrapped up in his arms. You glanced up to him as he slept, a smile forming on your face. This wasn’t how it was supposed to go, not when you were trying to take things slowly with him; but for right now, you didn’t care. You moved closer to him, which only stirred him awake.

“Well, good morning,” he said when he noticed you looking at him. His voice was cracked with sleep, and he squinted his eyes at you.

“Hi,” you said softly.

“Did I really just stay the night with you?”

You nodded, smiling harder now.

“You should know that I don’t normally let strange men sleep in my bed.”

“Now I’m strange?” He chuckled. “You really have a way with words,”

“You know what I mean.”

“I didn’t mean to stay,” he explained as he sat up. “I really should go.”

“Yeah, I need to start getting ready for the day,” you replied.

“We have like, two hours before we even need to be down there.”

“Yeah, that’s two hours to get ready.”

“It really takes you two hours?”

You smirked at him, “You really think it takes any less for me to look the way that I do?”

“I mean, you’re makeup free right now,” he said with a grin, “wearing sweats and a t-shirt…”

“Sorry about that,” you muttered, running your hand through your tangled hair. You suddenly felt very uncomfortable. You rarely let anyone see you like this, and you liked to at least look presentable when people were around.

“Don’t be sorry,” he smiled. He leaned toward you, kissing you again. “I think you look amazing, just like this.”

“Now I think you’ve lost your mind completely.”

“Natural beauty,” he mumbled, “I like it.”

“Why are you so nice to me?” The words came out before you could think. It had been constant with you. You couldn’t help but ask him all the time, especially in moments like this.

“I find it really sad that you even have to ask that.”

“I just don’t know if I’ll ever get used to it,” you shrugged.

“You’ll learn to,” he replied as he moved away from you. He began to pick up his belongings, ready to head to his own room. “I’ll see you in a couple hours?”

“Yeah, I’ll be there. Just- make sure no one sees you leave my room.”

“I know, I know,” he muttered as he waved his hand at you, “secret relationship, I get it.”

You laughed at him as you watched him leave, the door closing softly behind him.

Chapter Text

You and Billy spent the rest of the weekend sneaking around. When everyone else chose to stay out late to party, the two of you figured those were good moments to spend together. During the day, he’d pull you off to somewhere private when no one was paying attention; mostly just to make out. You felt like a teenager again. Giggly and excited over your new crush. He had a way of talking to you that made you feel good about yourself for once in your life. Even more, you found that you absolutely loved being around him.

You still felt terribly out of place at these things. You co-workers still avoided you like the plague, probably because of the last time you had blown up at them for teasing you. You didn’t care though, as long as you had Billy.

By Sunday though, people had caught on to you and Billy disappearing all the time. Not ones to enjoy being left in the dark over what was going on in this tight-knit group, a few of them had decided to take it upon themselves to point out the obvious.

“So…” Rich began. He gave you and Billy a knowing grin as he approached you; the two of you sitting side by side on the couch in the middle of a conversation. “I know I’m not the only one wondering this, but what the hell is going on between the two of you?”

You felt yourself blush, knowing that your plan to keep this thing quiet for a while wasn’t working out in your favor. You looked around, noticing that some of the others had their attention drawn to the fact that Rich had finally asked what they had all been wanting to ask.

“What do you mean?” Billy asked.

“I mean, the two of you have been disappearing an awful lot this weekend, and always at the same time.”

“He’s not wrong,” Kim added. You glared at her, knowing that she probably knew a little more than everyone else. She had been the one to help you get ready for your first date with Billy, after she apologized for talking about you behind your back. You suddenly felt betrayed. “When one of you is gone, so is the other. We all know you went out once, now I kinda wonder if it’s been more than once.”

“I don’t see how any of that is anyone’s business,” you replied.

“I guess it’s not,” Rich said. “We were just curious is all.”

“We are friends,” you said, “I know it’s hard to believe, but Billy and I actually get along quite well. There’s nothing going on.”

You could feel Billy’s stare as you said it all. You forced yourself not to look at him, no matter how badly you wanted to reassure him that you did, in fact, like him more than you were letting on.

“What are we talking about?” Rob asked as he came into the room in the middle of your explanation.

“We’re talking about how we think Billy and Y/N are sneaking around together,” Kim chuckled.

“Oh yeah? What is all that about anyway? You two are being so weird,” Rob added.

“Is there a such thing as privacy anymore?” You asked.

“Not around here sweetheart,” Rich joked.

“This is stupid. You’re all being stupid as usual.” You stood up from the couch, feeling even more flustered now. The worst part of it was that Billy was doing nothing to help.

“Why do you always have to call us stupid?” Rob asked. He looked at you, frowning in disapproval over your choice of words.

“Because you are. You all think everything is a big joke, and you think it’s funny to make fun of me.”

“No one’s making fun of you,” Kim added. “We’re just curious is all.”

“Well, stop!” You shouted. “I am so tired of trying to defend myself to you guys. You’re all so horrible to me.”

“Hey,” Rich cut in, “you’re the one who doesn’t involve herself in anything we do. We’ve tried to include you. You’re the one who thinks she’s too good for us.”

“Maybe I am too good for you. Maybe all of this is just a waste of time. I hate these conventions, and I’m only on the show because of the paycheck.”

“You’re getting upset over nothing,” Kim said. “Calm down. No one is making fun of you. If anything, you should feel sort of liked because we actually show interest.”

“You’re only worried about Billy,” you spat. “I’m not an idiot. The idea that something could be going on between us makes you all sick. You think he’s too good for me, I get it.”

“Why are you getting so worked up?” Billy asked quietly. You looked over to him, heart racing now. He was still sitting there, watching you lose it over this stupid conversation.

“I’m not.”

“Yeah, you are. You need to calm down. I like you, Y/N. But these guys are my friends. They’ve been my friends a lot longer than I’ve known you.”

“I’m just sticking up for myself because no one else will,” you replied accusingly.

“You don’t need to stick up for yourself. You’re the one bringing this on yourself. No one is making fun of you. They’re my friends, and they’re just curious.”

“Well, I don’t enjoy having people in my business. Nothing good ever comes out of having people be over involved.”

“Did you ever think that maybe I want them to know if I’m seeing someone?” Billy asked.

“Wait, what?” Rob cut in, looking confused. “You two are seeing each other?”

“I know you two went out once, but you’re actually seeing each other?” Kim added.

“We weren’t supposed to say anything,” you said, looking at Billy. You had to admit that he made you a little angry right now. The last thing you needed was for his friends to judge you even more, or worse, talk him out of being with you.

“I’m sorry, I’m not very good at secrets.”

“A secret relationship?” Rich chimed in. “For how long?”

Billy looked at you as if he were testing the waters, at the same time, trying to think about how long the two of you had been involved.

“Just over a month?” He questioned you.

“Billy,” you mumbled, “why can’t you just be quiet about it?”

“Why should I? I like you, you like me… we’re good together. I think I’d like for my friends to know about us.”

“You didn’t ask if I was okay with it though.”

“Why are you so upset over this? Are you embarrassed of me?”

“Of course not,” you replied, “I just don’t want them to have another reason to give me a hard time. I don’t want them to convince you that you could do better.”

“Whoa,” Rob said, throwing his hands up in defeat, “first of all, we don’t give you a hard time. Secondly, who Billy chooses to date is not our business.”

“We would never interfere,” Kim added.

“Y/N,” Billy said softly, “I get that you’re worried about what people think of you, but you’re overreacting.”

“Oh, so now I’m crazy?”

“I didn’t-” Billy stopped himself short, looking as if he were trying to calm himself. “You are so high-strung. I didn’t say you were crazy. But, right now, you’re being a brat.”

“Did you just call me a brat? Like, you really just did that?” You asked, taken aback at his choice of word. More than that, you had never had anyone call you out like this, even with a stupid name usually reserved for a child.

“Yeah, I did, because that’s how you’re acting.”

“No one has ever talked to me like that.”

“Well, get used to it. Especially if you choose to keep acting like this.” Billy stared at you, obviously testing you.

In any other situation, with any other person, you most likely would have stormed out of the room right now. But, there was something about the way he didn’t act afraid of you like most people did. You could’ve done without the name calling, but even you knew he was right. You were acting childish, only because you didn’t really know how to act with people who wanted to know so much about your private life. You weren’t angry with him though, in fact, the way he brought you down a notch was kind of hot. He stared at you, his serious face on; and you just stood there, equally serious.

You also realized that your behavior wasn’t sending him running just yet. You were being horrible to the people closest to him; but instead of telling you that he was done with you, he made a point of letting you know that he would continue to call you out when you were acting like a jerk.

You weren’t sure what came over you just then, but you took a deep breath and approached him. He probably expected you to slap him for calling you names, because he definitely flinched slightly when you were finally standing in front of him. You said nothing, but you practically sat on his lap as you pulled his face to yours, kissing him deeply. The way that he stood up to you and took no shit was a turn on, and you didn’t care if everyone was still here, watching this all unfold in shock.

It took him a moment to realize what was going on, and before you knew it, he was pulling you down onto him as he returned the kiss with as much passion as you were giving him.

When you both came back for air, you stared into each other’s eyes, both equally amazed at how the moment had turned into this. You had nearly forgotten that everyone else was here, until you heard someone clear their throat uncomfortably.

“Uh, that was… sweet and all,” Rich began, “but maybe it would be better if you went back to your secret relationship.”

Billy chuckled at Rich’s words, the others adding in their two cents about PDA and how you should keep it to yourselves. There were no remarks over how they hated the idea of you and Billy, there were no snide comments on how he could do better than you, there wasn’t anything that you expected from them. They went about their day as if it didn’t bother them.

For the first time in the midst of all of this, you realized that these people weren’t set out to hate you at all. They knew very well at this point that you and Billy were definitely involved, and no one wanted to get in the way of that.

You felt bad about the way you had talked to them for the rest of the day. Your words replayed in your mind, mostly Billy’s words took over. You had been very turned on by the way he stood up to you, people just didn’t speak to you in that way. All of the years you had spent building up a thick skin and pretending to be a hard-ass suddenly seemed like a waste. Perhaps you didn’t have to be so stubborn and cold all the time. Maybe it was okay to let other people in. While the idea of having new friends seemed like a long shot, especially with the way you had behaved around these people that you worked with, you figured that you had been able to let yourself be vulnerable with Billy, why couldn’t you eventually let your guard down with the people he loved?


When it came time for the con to end and for everyone to head home, you reveled in the fact that you got to go back to L.A. and be with him without having to hide in the privacy of hotel rooms or green rooms. You knew you didn’t technically have to hide anything anymore, not from his friends anyway. But, you had a hard time dealing with people who judged you. You constantly felt that you were under scrutiny with them as well as with fans. The idea of keeping your relationship secret at least publicly helped to throw everyone off so that they would leave you alone.

This was all very new to you. You hadn’t ever had a boyfriend before, not a real one anyway; and although the two of you hadn’t quite gotten to the point of calling yourself a couple, you really felt that you were headed in that direction.

You had finally arrived home after a long flight. After throwing your bags aside as you entered your house, you immediately called Billy. He had left the night before and you hated to admit it, but you missed having him around.

“Hey, gorgeous,” he greeted you. You imagined that smug grin hidden beneath that beard as you heard his voice.

“When and where are we meeting?” You asked quickly. That sounded awfully pushy, but you’d be lying if you said that he wasn’t the only thing you were thinking of.

“Wow, wasting no time,” he chuckled.

“I sort of miss you,” you replied as you headed to your bedroom. You laid down across your bed, smiling ear to ear just at the sound of his voice. “Are we going to see each other before I have to go back to Vancouver?”

“Of course we are. Actually, I was waiting for you to call me when you got in. I was hoping you could come to my place, we could just hang out.”

“I’d like that.”

You happily made the drive to his place even if you had just gotten off a plane today. You didn’t necessarily want to drive, but you quickly learned that you might do almost anything for this man. When you arrived, you knocked on the door and waited impatiently for him to answer. When he finally did, you immediately pulled him to you, grabbing the back of his head to lead him down to a kiss. He seemed surprised by your sudden movement, but easily melted into the kiss as well.

He wrapped his arms around you, holding you tightly as his lips moved against yours. You had to strain yourself slightly, standing on tiptoes to keep contact with his lips. Your head buzzed and your body tingled. Nothing could ever feel as good as these moments.

“Okay,” he chuckled as he broke the kiss, “you sure you want to make out on the porch? Maybe we can take this inside.”

“Sorry,” you smiled.

“Don’t be sorry. I’m happy to see you too.”

He led you inside and you shyly took a moment to look around. You were a little surprised at how nice his place was. It wasn’t what you expected, but then again, you didn’t often go over to random men’s homes so you didn’t really have anything to compare it to.

“Want a beer?” He asked as he headed for the kitchen.

“You sure know how to sweet talk a lady.”

“I know you pretend to be all high-class and only drink wine, but I also know that you secretly love beer.” He handed you a bottle and you grinned at him, impressed that he really did know a bit about you.

You eventually found your way to the couch where you both sat. You talked more, and it felt as if you would never get sick of talking to him. You probably told him more about yourself than anyone had ever bothered to know. Truthfully, he certainly knew you better than anyone else by now. He was easy to talk to and you felt that you could trust him with anything.

“You know, I had a lot of fun over the weekend with our sneaking around and all, but do you ever think about just being open about all of this?”

“What are you talking about?.” you asked. “Your friends already know, most of them anyway.”

“I just mean… family, fans… like, being more public with it.”

“You want your fans to know I’m with you? So they can hate me? I can tell you, the fandom knows I’m not the warmest member of the cast, I don’t think they’d be too keen on the idea of me being with their beloved guitarist.”

“Nobody hates you.”

“Well, then they really just don’t like me.”

“What are we anyway?” He asked suddenly, the thought had obviously been weighing on him for some time, and it had been weighing on you as well..

“I don’t know,” you replied. “I mean, we’ve gone out a few times, we’ve been sneaking around to be together…”

“We make out a lot.”

“That too,” you chuckled. “I don’t know what this is because I’ve never had something like this.”

He leaned in to kiss you; brushing your hair behind your ear as his lips met yours.

“I think I really like you.”

“I like you too.”

He kissed you again, harder this time as he pressed against you. The kiss became heated very quickly. The second his tongue slipped past your lips, you involuntarily let out a small moan against his mouth. This prompted him further, and the next thing you knew, he had pressed you back, down against the couch so that he could lay on top of you. You felt stupid for how nervous you were now. You were an adult woman for fuck’s sake. Having a man kiss you and move things in this direction shouldn’t send your nerves haywire like this. But, you were extremely nervous. You wanted him, of course. He made you feel good, and you enjoyed the feel of his weight on top of you. Something about him made you feel safe.

Right now, you hated the fact that you had never let yourself be with anyone else before. It had been your own stubbornness really. Opportunities had presented themselves to you plenty of times, but you were so tired of people pushing you around, telling you what to do; you denied anyone who ever tried to get that close.

Now, you wanted to be with Billy. There was no denying it at this point. Every part of you wanted to let him in, let him be the one to share in that intimacy with you. But, all you could think about now was what a disappointment you would be to him. You didn’t know what you were doing, and you couldn’t bear the idea of him making fun of you and walking out on you because you were so disappointing.

You hesitantly pushed him away again, breaking the kiss as he quickly pushed himself off of you.

“I’m sorry,” he began.

“Don’t be. I’m the one who is sorry.”

“Sometimes, I still think you were messing with me when you said you were a virgin.”

“Can you not?” You cringed at the word. You knew he meant no harm by it, but the word itself sounded pathetic in your mind.

“What?”

“I just- I hate that word. I hate when you say it.”

“It’s nothing to be ashamed of,” he said. He looked at you as if he were trying to comfort you now. You had been embarrassed the moment you had let it slip that you had never been with someone like that, and even more embarrassed that he had sort of made fun of you for it until he realized you were serious.

“Just- can we not make such a big deal about it?”

“I’m not,” he promised. He leaned in again, this time kissing your neck softly; a move that only made you get more worked up. God knows you wanted to be with him, but you were making yourself sick with nervousness now.

“We need to slow down again,” you mumbled as you reached up to run a hand through his hair. You let your fingers tangle in his dark strands, closing your eyes as he continued to kiss at your neck.

“Anything you want,” he replied softly.

“Can I still sleep over, even if nothing is going to happen?” You asked hesitantly. Currently, you were at the point in this relationship where you wanted to be with him constantly. You just weren’t sure if this was what he wanted. Eventually, if things went well, you knew that he would be the one that you could be really serious about. The only question in your mind was, would he be willing to hold out for as long as you needed him to?

“Of course, I was hoping you would. We can cuddle.” He pulled back from you, offering you a grin as you continued to play with his hair.

Chapter Text

Things with Billy were going well. So well, in fact, that you couldn’t help but often feel as if it were all too good to be true. He was good to you. He was sweet and treated you better than anyone ever had. Even more, he was respectful about certain things in your life that not many other people were respectful about.

You had been seeing each other for a couple of months now. He didn’t seem to be going anywhere, he actually appeared as if he really liked you. You knew that, for the first time, you weren’t going anywhere either. Having an actual boyfriend was something that was far beyond your comprehension when it came to personal relationships. You simply didn’t develop those types of relationships. Even the people in the business who considered themselves your friends, weren’t really. You didn’t have friends, it just kept up appearances to say that you were friends with other celebrities. But, your developing relationship with Billy was something else entirely. You had finally met someone who, not only made you feel good to be around, but you had also found someone who would absolutely not take any of your shit. Normally, anyone who dared to call you out on your behavior or bitchiness would send you into a fit of rage, as you were so used to getting your way; but Billy, he made you feel differently. When he called you out, it was sort of a turn on. The dominance was something new to you. You realized just by being with him that perhaps you scared most of the people who came into your life, but this was the one person who wasn’t afraid of you. Maybe he cared about you more than anyone else ever had.

Today, you had woken up in his bed again, at his house. It had become the new normal for you. A life lived alone and reserved, had become a little more open as you began to find yourself wanting, no, needing to be around him all the time. You craved waking up next to that smile, those eyes, and the way you felt with just the warmth of his body so close to yours. For a girl who insisted on being alone for so long, you were becoming pretty depended on being with him.

He never pressured you. Even when you’d lay in his bed next to him, the kissing that always happened growing more and more heated each time, he was at least a gentleman. He respected you enough to let you lead most of the time; and while you very much considered taking things further with him, there was still a part of you that was too afraid to. Maybe all of this was too good to be true. The words that your own mother used to say to you constantly played through your mind, even after all this time.

“You’re such a spoiled brat with no talent. The only reason that you have what you have is because of the way you look. You think anyone will ever really love you? They will all see right through you the way that I do, a little bitch who only looks good on screen.”

You took her word for it. Maybe she was the reason why you had built up your walls, becoming the person that she thought you to be. It was easier in the long run; just treat people like shit to keep them out. At least that way, no one could ever hurt you.

Billy though, he was different. He had told you that he liked you. Even when you were certain he was pursuing you because he thought you were pretty. He was the only person who seemed to be able to look past your tough exterior to find that there might actually be a real person with actual feelings inside.

You moved closer to Billy, your sleepy haze fogging your brain as you wrapped an arm around him. You wanted to be close to him, especially now as the replay of all of your worst memories were taking over. You were usually pretty good at pushing the thoughts aside, but it was a little harder to this morning.

He greeted you with a grin, his eyes opening as he looked over at you. You smiled back, catching on to how contagious his constant happiness was.

“Good morning,” he mumbled as he leaned in to kiss you softly.

“Hey, I’ve been thinking…” you trailed off, wondering if what you wanted to say was too much this early in the morning.

“Uh, oh,” he chuckled. You pushed him playfully, laughing as he joked with you. “What are you thinking about?”

“I’m thinking that maybe it’s time that we be a little more open about our relationship.”

“Really?” He asked as he raised his brows at you. “What changed your mind?”

“I mean, everyone we work with… your friends… they know already. Maybe it’s not such a bad idea to just make it public. People are going to find out anyway. Especially when I just want to be around you all the time.”

“What are we anyway?” He asked. Truthfully, the two of you had never actually decided what this was. You had simply fallen into some sort of relationship that neither of you had put a label to. But, you knew what this was and you had decided that you wanted to finally pin down what you were.

“Well, I really like you,” you said softly as you traced your fingertips along his chest, “is it okay for me to call you my boyfriend?”

He smiled harder as you looked back up at him, and you felt him grip a hand against your waist.

“Wow, I thought you’d never get there.”

“What do you mean?”

“I thought we’d keep doing what we were doing and you’d keep pretending that we aren’t in an actual relationship.”

“I’m sorry,” you blushed, “relationships are not my forte. I’m really bad at this.”

“You’re doing great,” he replied. “So, how exactly should we be open about this.”

You shrugged, looking back down at your hand that rested against his chest.

“I don’t know. I know nothing about how to be in a relationship.”

“Here,” he began. He moved away from you slightly, reaching over to the night stand to retrieve his phone. He quickly opened his camera, putting it on selfie mode as he worked to get the two of you in frame. He tightened his grip on you and pulled you closer to him.

“What are you doing?” You asked.

“The easiest way… photo on social media.”

“Oh god,” you mumbled, trying to move away from him.

“What? Now you’re embarrassed at the idea of me posting a picture of us together?”

“Not at all,” you replied, “I just- I mean, I just woke up… I look horrible. Give me a moment to get ready and then we can take a decent picture.”

He stopped you as you tried to move away from him. You were a little offended that he wanted to take a picture of you like this. You had just woken up, your hair a mess, without a bit of makeup of your face. Not to mention that you were wearing an ill fitting t-shirt that you had found in his closet the night before.

“Hey,” he said as he grabbed your hand to stop you. “I don’t know who told you that you weren’t beautiful even when you’re not put together, but they’re wrong.”

You glanced over to him again. You knew that he didn’t really care how you looked first thing in the morning, but you always still made sure to get yourself presentable as quickly as possible. You often gave the man props for being able to put up with the way you looked without all your makeup for a few minutes each day.

“You’re beautiful,” he continued, “you’re beautiful when you’re all made up, but I find you even sexier like this. First thing in the morning; when you’re sleepy and your hair is a mess and I get to see your natural beauty.”

“I will never get used to how nice you are to me,” you replied.

“I still find that really sad.”

You smiled softly and crawled back toward him. You leaned in over him, finding his lips with yours as you kissed him softly. You still felt electricity race through your body every time you kissed him. You still felt dizzy and light headed even after all this time. When you pulled back from the kiss, you laid next to him, resting your head against his chest. He put his phone back up, getting the two of you in frame. You felt him kiss the top of your head and you closed your eyes, humming in appreciation as he snapped a picture.

You suddenly didn’t care how you looked anymore. You didn’t care what anyone would think for now. Just being with him here like this made you feel like the most beautiful woman in the world.


Just days after your apparent “coming out” with your relationship with Billy, you weren’t at all surprised to get an unexpected call from your publicist. She asked to meet with you, just to go over some things. You couldn’t help but roll your eyes as she spoke to you on the phone. She was treading lightly as usual, not getting to the actual point of what the meeting was really about, but you knew better.

The news had spread a bit slowly within the past couple of days. Billy did in fact post the photo of the two of you, adding a sweet caption just to hint that the two of you were together. You had to admit, you panicked briefly once it was done. But, as you constantly checked on the Instagram post, you noticed that everyone you worked with were being incredibly supportive. Even fans were being kind. There was a lot of congratulatory comments and likes; so much that you then decided to share his post. When you did this, the news spread even further as you had a lot more followers than he did.

When you ended up at the restaurant that your publicist had told you to meet her at, you found her quickly and joined her at a table.

“Y/N,” she said as you sat across from her, “how are you?”

“Hey, Jen,” you replied, “I’m doing well, thank you.”

“We haven’t talked in a while. Tell me, how is working on the show going? How have the conventions been? Any big news that you might want to share with me?”

She studied you and you smiled, impressed that she wasn’t wasting time at addressing something that you probably should have discussed with her first.

“Things are great on set and with the cons. I’m really enjoying them.”

“I see that you are,” she replied. She stopped for a moment, waiting for you to maybe let her in on something else. You smiled at her as you silently refused to play her little game. “Y/N, we’re friends, right?”

You let out soft chuckle, knowing that you wouldn’t really call your relationship with her and actual friendship. “Sure, we’re friends. But, you also work for me, so…”

“I couldn’t help but notice that some things in your life have changed recently.”

“Look, if you’re talking about the fact that I’m in a relationship, just get to the point. You know I hate to beat around the bush.”

“Okay, I called you because we need to talk about this guy you’re apparently dating.”

“I’m not ‘apparently’ dating him,” you laughed, “I am actually dating him.”

“Yeah, you went very public with it, or rather, he did.”

“What do you mean?”

“I mean, I wish you’d talk to me about these things before you act. You let him plaster your faces all over the internet, Y/N.”

“He’s my boyfriend. It was bound to come out sooner than later.”

“What’s in it for him?” Jen asked suddenly.

“What?”

“Never mind,” she said shaking her head, “I know exactly what’s in it for him.”

You stared at her, sort of taken aback at how upset she seemed. She stared at you, and almost disappointed look on her face.

“Y/N,” she continued, “you need to talk to me when you have new people in your life. Especially if those new people are… guys like this. I don’t care what your deal with him is, what you do in private is your business. But, you can’t just throw stuff like this all over social media. You can’t let him do this to you.”

“He’s not doing anything,” you began, now offended that she was insinuating otherwise.

“Come on Y/N,” she chuckled. She made eye contact, looking at you as if you were stupid. “Some random guitar player in some random band is hooking up with a celebrity like you? You can’t honestly think that there’s not something in all of this for him.”

You swallowed hard, choking back the need to cry as she said it. You had certainly considered this before, but you figured you were being paranoid.

“This is why you have a publicist. I’m here to make sure you don’t get into trouble. I’m here to make sure you surround yourself with the right people, people who will make you look good. I really think this guy is his own publicist.”

“You don’t know anything about him,” you said angrily.

“You’re right, I don’t. No one does.” Jen continued to eye you, this time looking a bit more fed up with you. “We worked very hard to clean up your image. I made sure to get you a high profile boyfriend, someone who actually helped your career; which wasn’t easy by the way, because of your personality, or lack of.”

You felt your face heat up as she spoke, and she laughed to herself as she continued to belittle you.

“The fact of the matter is, you need to consider what all of this could do to your career.”

“How is this… how is he going to possibly hurt my career?”

“You’re high profile,” she reminded you, “you’re a big star, who should be involved with another big star. Some rock guy in a band is only going to throw your fans off. No one knows who he is and no one cares. You’re not going to remain relevant if no one cares.”

“You mean I should be dating someone else that you have to pay to date me?” You asked, referring to your last relationship with a big name actor that didn’t last.

She laughed at you again, pursing her lips as she nodded her head.

“Okay, fair enough. I always knew you were smart. Yes, we did pay him. But, unfortunately, it’s a little difficult to find anyone who wants to date you willingly.”

Usually, you didn’t let her get to you; no matter how often she said horrible things to you. You had begun to treat her and others in your professional life the same way you had learned to treat your mother. You let them talk, and just brushed their hurtful words aside. You were stronger than all of that, and there was no point in fighting with the people who were making the decisions about your career.

“Well, I’ve finally found someone who is willing,” you said quietly.

“Yeah,” she replied, now looking at you sympathetically, “now you just need to ask yourself why he’s so willing.”

“Maybe he just likes me.”

“Maybe,” she replied with another laugh, “or maybe there’s something else in it for him.”

Again, you were letting her words get to you. Of course there had been times when you considered all of this. Especially on the days where you stopped to think about why Billy was sticking with you at all. It was in your nature to question people’s intentions; and Billy was no different. You had forced yourself to stop though when you realized that you wanted to believe that he really did like you for you. People like Jen didn’t help with the insecurities that you had though. You didn’t necessarily believe what she was saying, you felt that you knew Billy better than that. Right now, you were livid as she berated you and Billy. It was her job to know what was going on in your life, and to bring you as much publicity as she could. But, for her to step in and try to make decisions about your personal life again was too much.

You decided not to argue with her. It was useless by now. She recommended that you consider ending things with Billy, maybe think about letting her set you up with someone else, someone who could actually help your career. Defeated, you told her that you’d think about it, but for now, you weren’t going to deny that you and Billy were a couple. You cared about him too much to give in to her pressuring you to break up with him.

You left the meeting, feeling as if a weight had been placed on you. It wasn’t so much that you were considering giving into the pressure of leaving Billy, no one had that much power in your life to make you change your mind. Instead, you were thrown off by the nagging question of “what’s in it for him?”

It had been a question you asked yourself often and only ignored because of how you felt when you were with him. You wanted to believe that he truly cared about you; but the fact that you constantly asked yourself this question and now someone on the outside was pointing it out, you were right back to not trusting him as much.

When you arrived back at Billy’s place, you couldn’t help but smile as you saw him sitting on the couch. He was caught up in some movie, and he grinned as you entered his home.

“How was your meeting?” He asked.

You forced a smile, now wondering if Jen had been right. You made your way to him, deciding that you needed to find out for yourself what his intentions were. You didn’t know if you want to hear it directly from him, but you knew that you needed to.

You promptly straddled him, catching him by surprise. His breath hitched in response, and he gripped onto your hips, eyes searching you as if asking what was going on. You leaned in, kissing him heatedly, letting your tongue tease his. If nothing else, at least you would get one more kiss out of him before this was all over. You pulled back after a while, his grip still firm on your hips as you spoke.

“So, what’s in it for you?” You whispered. You leaned in, kissing along his neck now. He shifted, groaning as you tasted his skin.

“What do you mean?”

You pulled back from him, meeting his gaze, “I mean, this relationship? Posting on social media that you’re with me…”

“What are you talking about?” He asked, narrowing his eyes at you as his hands began to push you away from him slightly.

“You were so pushy about being open with this… with us.”

“Woah,” he responded, looking annoyed now, “you’re the one who wanted to do it. I just went with it.”

You ignored his statement, knowing damn well that he was right. Your mind was all over the place now, thinking that you needed to do something to call him out on the fact that he could very well be using you.

“Does you sharing a picture of me in bed with you help you out?” you continued. You leaned in to kiss his neck again. “What if I slept with you right now? Would that help too?”

“What the hell are you talking about?” He mumbled. You felt him grip onto your arms and push you away from him.

“What’s in it for you?” You asked again. You stared into his eyes, now unable to control the tears that had been building up. You were so confused, and worried that Jen; and by extension, you, had been right. Surely this man could easily be using you to publicize himself; and you were angry at the thought of it.

“Y/N, what is going on,” he asked softly. He let go of your arms, reaching his hands up to cup your face as you began to cry.

“Please tell me the truth,” you choked out.

He began to wipe your tears away before pulling you back toward him. He pulled you against his chest and held you as you sobbed. You felt his hand run through your hair as he shushed you, trying to calm you down.

“I don’t know what happened at your meeting,” he began, “but if this is all too much, I can delete that picture and just say that it was a joke or something.”

“Please tell me that you’re not with me just because it makes you look good,” you said. You pulled back from him to look at him again. His hands went for your face again, thumbs stroking along your skin.

“How could you think that?” He asked, “Y/N… I’m with you because I like you… I’m falling in love with you.”

His last few words made your heart stop. You gripped your hands into his shirt, caught by surprise at how sudden this was and how unexpected it had been. You never considered love; mostly because you had never felt love for anyone ever. Hearing him say that he was falling for you was terrifying. You focused on breathing as you let his words sink in. The way he smiled at you right now, that look in his eyes… the man wasn’t an actor, but if he had been, you’d say this lie was really convincing.

“There’s nothing in this for me other than the fact that I get to be with you,” he continued when he realized you were a bit stunned.

Those were the right words; the words you were waiting to hear. And, you believed him. Based on the way you interacted with everyone in your life, you were really good at reading people. You had built up an ability to know when people were lying to you, mostly because people in your professional life lied to you constantly. You knew that he wasn’t lying to you, in fact, he was the most honest person you had ever known.

You leaned in again, kissing him deeply; hoping that he wouldn’t think you were too crazy. You hated that you let Jen get to you like that, but at least any doubts that you may have had in Billy this entire time were no longer a concern. You snuggled against his chest again, breathing out as you let yourself calm down from your minor outburst.

“I’m sorry,” you said quietly, “I’m so sorry.”

“It’s okay,” he replied, “”I just want to make sure that you’re okay.”

You nodded, indicating that you would be okay.

“I bet you didn’t realize just how crazy I am when you asked me out the first time,” you chuckled.

“Nah, I knew the entire time,” he joked. You giggled in response, pressing your face against his chest.

“You said you were falling in love with me…” You reiterated the statement that had caught you by surprise. Still, the words coming from his mouth didn’t quite make sense to you. “Did you say that just so I’d stop being crazy?”

“I meant it,” he replied as he kissed the top of your head.

Chapter Text

If there was one thing that Billy was really good at, besides playing music, it was his ability to alleviate the moments when you felt most out of control of your own life. You had overreacted after the meeting with your publicist, and blatantly took it out on him, convinced that maybe he really was using you. You don’t know how he did it, but he talked you down that night. He reminded you that you were in control of your own life and it was okay for you to take a step back and maybe not give others so much free-range in planning your life and career. Those words had been a little harder to swallow since you had been in this business for a long time, with the same team backing you from the beginning.

You knew one thing for sure, you were not about to take back the fact that you and Billy had finally been open about your relationship. You adored him. And, despite the fact that you had been thrown off when he told you he was falling in love with you, you didn’t let that scare you away. You knew you weren’t to that point yet, but you felt for the first time with anyone, you could get there.

It was the day before the two of you were meant to fly out for another convention weekend. You had been spending all of your free time back home in L.A. with Billy. You loved being around him, and he didn’t seem to be sick of you yet. Today, you were lounging on his couch, arguing over what movie you wanted to watch. Maybe the two of you didn’t have a lot in common, but you managed to not focus on that. He begrudgingly clicked on the movie that you wanted to watch, and you felt accomplished as you realized he always gave you your way. You didn’t mean for it to happen all the time and you wanted him to get his way sometimes as well. However, you weren’t used to having a man who was willing to put up with you the way that he was.

You snuggled against him, smiling as he pouted; both of you knowing damn well that it didn’t matter who won, you’d both be making out halfway through the film anyway.

“You coming to the show tonight?” He asked after a few minutes.

“I don’t know,” you mumbled. Seeing live bands wasn’t really your thing. You enjoyed your quiet time and really only got it when you were home during the week. The noise and crowded venues where bands played was a bit much for you, so you avoided them usually.

“I’d really love it if you did,” he replied. You felt him stroke your arm as he held you and you moved back to look up at him.

“I’ve seen you guys play before.”

“I know, but I’d like for you to come hang out. Everyone knows you’re my girl, maybe I want to show you off.”

You raised a brow at him, secretly happy that he wanted the world to know that you were his. You had never felt this happy before.

“Come on,” he urged, “I’ll buy you a Swain shirt.”

“Oh, you’re trying to bribe me?”

“Maybe.”

“I don’t know, you know the guys don’t like me very much. I don’t want to step on toes.”

“Didn’t we talk about you getting to know everyone now that we’re together. I’m telling you, you hang out with my friends every now and then, they’ll start to like you just as much as I do.”

“You’re right,” you chuckled. You knew that he was right. He had mentioned the fact that you needed to be willing to get to know people, especially now. You said you would do that for him, excited over the possibility of showing them that you weren’t really all that bad. You could be a nice person most of the time, and you really weren’t that boring. The only reason that no one liked you was because you put yourself out there as someone who didn’t want to let people in. Billy had changed you in many ways, and you figured it could be okay to make the effort to be friendly with those who were closest to him.

“So you’re coming?”

“Yeah, I’ll go,” you agreed, “but only if you buy me a shirt.”

“Wow, I actually got my way for once,” he chuckled. You returned to snuggling against him, smiling to yourself when you realized he had gotten his way this time.

“Don’t get used to it,” you joked.


You stood back that night, watching the band play as you indulged in a few drinks at the bar. They really were good, and you did enjoy their music. It wasn’t just because your boyfriend happened to play guitar for them either.

After the show, Billy promptly found you, giving you a long kiss when he did. You were slightly thrown off when a young woman approached him as you were holding each other. She tapped on his shoulder and he spun around, suddenly looking thrilled to see the mystery woman. You were immediately uncomfortable by the way they hugged.

Billy talked to her for a moment and you remained polite, listening as Billy seemed to be focused on the two of you getting to know each other.

“This is Mia,” Billy said, pointing to the woman. “She’s a good friend of ours. Comes to every local show and has supported us for a long time.”

“A fan,” you pointed out.

“Well, you know us,” Billy replied, “fans are friends too.”

“Oh.”

“This is Y/N,” he said to her, finally acknowledging that you were there too.

“Oh, your girlfriend?” Mia asked.

“Yes, I’m a lucky guy, I know.” Billy wrapped an arm around you and you wrapped your arm around his waist in return, realizing suddenly that it was important to stake your claim on him.

“You’re that actress,” she pointed out, “the one who just started on the show not too long ago.”

“That’s me.”

“Wow,” she replied, “what is a big star like you doing with our Billy?”

You gave her a confused look, unsure of what she was really asking. “Well, technically, he’s my Billy.”

Mia chuckled, Billy following suit. “I stand corrected.”

“Billy is is a great guy,” you continued, “he brings out the best of me, and I’m the one who got lucky.”

Billy grinned at you, kissing you softly on the lips. You couldn’t help but feel confident right now as he made sure to let everyone know that he was yours, especially this woman.

“Well, you’re both very good-looking. I have to say, you make a cute couple. But, anyone would look amazing next to this guy.”

You were very much unimpressed with her attempt at flattery. She was obviously trying to flatter Billy, all while very coyly talking shit to you. You knew what she was doing, you weren’t so sure that Billy understood though.

Mia was making you uneasy; the way she was looking at Billy, the way that she kept touching his arm as they talked, the way she was obviously faking friendliness toward you.

You were all but forgotten again as the two of them chatted, obviously catching up as if it had been some time since they had seen each other. You returned to your seat at the bar, feeling a little bit jealous and a bit upset that Billy was ignoring you for this girl. She was still touching him, shooting him flirty smiles, and ‘fuck me’ eyes as they spoke. Your blood was boiling just watching the entire scene. Even worse, Billy seemed completely oblivious to it all.

After what seemed like forever, Billy returned to you when she excused herself for a moment. You glared at him as he leaned against the bar.

“What?” He asked when he noticed that you probably didn’t look too happy.

“I don’t like her,” you said with a forced smile when you were sure she was nowhere around.

“What? She’s great,” Billy replied with a laugh. “She’s a good friend.”

“A good friend who blatantly hits on you in front of me after you told her I was your girlfriend.”

“She was not hitting on me.”

“Yes, she was.”

“You’re jealous,” he joked. “That’s cute, but you have nothing to be jealous about.”

“I’m not jealous, but I’m also not stupid. I’m a woman who can tell when another woman is hitting on a man.”

“You’re jealous, and there’s no reason to be.”

“Maybe I’m a little jealous, but I do have a reason to be.”

“Y/N, she’s a friend. She always comes to the shows and we talk. It’s nothing to worry about.”

“She comes to the shows to look at you.”

“Stop it, you’re being ridiculous.”

“Don’t talk to me like that,” you snapped. Usually it was turn on when Billy put you in your place over your stupid behavior. Right now, it was not a turn on. You were insulted because you knew that she had been too friendly and he was acting blind to it.

“For someone who has never been in a relationship before, you sure act like you know what you’re talking about.”

You stood there, stunned now after he said it. You felt humiliated suddenly as he pointed out that you probably didn’t know a damn thing about relationships. He took a long drink of his beer and turned to you, noticing that he may have crossed a line.

“I’m sorry,” he sighed, “I didn’t mean it like that.”

“I’m going home,” you announced. Now you were pissed and you really didn’t want to talk to him anymore. “I’m going back to my place, alone.”

You turned from him, holding back tears as you stormed away.

“Y/N!” he called out to you, “Fuck, will you please stop?”

You didn’t turn to face him, even if you knew he was following you. Once you made it outside, you searched the street for a cab to get you out of there. You felt Billy grab you by the arm, turning you around so that you could face him.

“I don’t want to talk to you,” you said.

“I know, I was a jerk. I’m sorry.”

“Just because I’m a loser who has no friends and has never had a real relationship until now, doesn’t mean that you can treat me as if I don’t know what I’m talking about.”

“I shouldn’t have said it that way, but you don’t know what you’re talking about. Just because a girl talks to me, doesn’t mean she wants to fuck me.”

“You’re wrong about her,” you replied.

“No, I’m not,” he argued. He was beginning to look just as upset as you felt right now. “I know I let you get your way all the time, because you’re just so damn cute, but I’m not giving in on this. You have nothing to worry about with her. She is a friend. She’s friends with all of us.”

“Can you please let me go? Because I refuse to stand around and watch my boyfriend let some chick hit on him in front of me.”

He let your arm go, looking at you in defeat.

“God, you are so frustrating sometimes,” he muttered.

“I’m going home,” you said again. “You can call me tomorrow if you’d like, as long as that girl doesn’t get the better of you tonight.”

“Why are you being like this? I’m not going to sleep with anyone else, Y/N. I thought you trusted me.”

“I do trust you. I don’t trust her.”

“Yeah, you know… maybe it is a good idea for you to go home. I’m staying. I’m gonna have drinks with my band, I’m gonna hang out with friends, and I don’t really want you standing around all night being rude to everyone.”

“Goodnight,” you replied flatly, knowing full well that he meant what he said. He knew you well enough to know that you wouldn’t let this go, and it wouldn’t be good for anyone if you stayed. You only hoped that your trust in him was well-placed. You didn’t think that he would do anything to mess this up, he had worked too damn hard to get to this place with you to begin with. Sometimes, you thought he’d realize his mistake in liking you, but he always managed to stay by your side.

“Goodnight,” he responded. He leaned in to place a quick kiss to your lips and you smiled slightly at the movement. “Can I come over later?”

“You have a key,” you shrugged, “I suppose you can do whatever you want.”

He offered you a forced smile before turning from you, reentering the venue as you stood out on the sidewalk. You let out a heavy sigh, feeling as if you should stay simply to do what you could to keep her away from him. You decided instead to let him learn on his own. You only hoped that he would make the right choice when he finally was faced with the fact that you were right.


You groaned and glanced over at your clock when you heard him come into your house. It was well after two a.m. and you were less than impressed with being woken up. The only relief you felt was knowing that he had come back to you after a long night of drinking with his friends and that woman at the bar. You saw him enter your room, kicking off his shoes and throwing his jacket aside as he whispered that it was only him. He crawled into bed next to you and you cuddled close to him, thankful that he was here.

“How was it?” you asked sleepily, trying to ignore the fact that he smelled like alcohol and sweat.

He didn’t say anything for a while, only held you and you felt him kiss the top of your head.

“Can’t we wait until we wake up for me to tell you that you were right?” He mumbled unhappily. You sat up quickly, reaching across him to turn on your bedside lamp. You looked at him as he shielded his eyes from the bright light.

“What are you doing?” He cried out.

“What do you mean, I was right?” you asked.

“I mean, you were right about her.”

“What did she do?”

“She didn’t do anything,” he said, “she definitely asked me to take her home though.”

You stared at him, sort of in disbelief that you had been right. You knew her type, and you definitely read her easily, you just didn’t expect for her to be so forward tonight of all nights.

“I didn’t go!” Billy insisted.

“Obviously,” you mumbled.

“Shit, she was flirty all night. That’s how she always is. I didn’t think anything of it, okay. It wasn’t until she got a little to close and flat out asked me to take her home that I knew I’d end up here, telling you that you were right.”

You felt very hurt. Not by Billy, even if he had insisted that you were wrong about her. You were hurt that another woman could look you right in the face as she told you that you and your boyfriend were so cute together, and go behind your back to try to take him home. You barely knew the woman, and you never had the desire to know her more. Still, if someone so close to him could act this way, who’s to say it couldn’t happen again and again.

“Nothing happened,” he reiterated, looking sort of worried that maybe you were thinking the worst.

“I know,” you said softly, “I told you that I trusted you.”

“I’m sorry I didn’t listen to you. I’m sorry that I treated you as if you didn’t know anything.”

“Did you consider it though?” You asked flatly. You stopped, wondering why you had said it out loud. He looked at you, puzzled for a moment.

“Consider taking her home?” He asked.

“Yeah, did you?”

“Why do you have to be like this,” he groaned. “I didn’t take her home, I didn’t go home with her. I’m here, with you.”

“It’s a serious question,” you insisted.

“No, I did not consider it. At all. I’m not interested in her. I’m with you, and I love you.”

You stared at him again, shocked that he had said the words. He had told you before that he was falling in love with you, but this was the first time he actually said those words.

“You love me?”

“Of course I do, Y/N.” He reached a hand up to your face, stroking along your cheek as he watched you.

You considered saying those words back to him, you wanted to. You honestly felt that you loved him as well. But, you didn’t really know the first thing about love. The thought of being in love scared you a bit. You knew you would be rushing things if you said the words as well. You didn’t respond in the way that maybe he expected, but he seemed to be okay with it. He was not a pushy guy, and he made sure to never force you into anything.

“Do you ever get a little frustrated?” You asked. You moved to lie next to him again, resting your head against his chest.

“What do you mean?”

“I mean, being with someone who has… never been with someone before.”

“Are we talking about sex?”

You nodded against him, blushing slightly over the word. “It’s got to be frustrating,” you continued.

“It’s not so bad,” he chuckled, “I’m pretty good at controlling my urges. I’d never go looking for it somewhere else though, if that’s what you’re worried about.”

“I was a little worried,” you said honestly. “I know that I trust you, but I also know that it can’t be easy.”

“It’s fine, Y/N.”

“You could have anyone,” you continued, “which is evident after tonight. You could have someone who’d give you what you want.”

“I think you misinterpret what it is that I want,” he chuckled.

“What do you want?” You looked up at him, placing a hand on his chest and resting your chin against it as you studied him.

“I want you,” he replied.

You smiled at him, leaning up then to kiss him on the lips.

He had a way with words, that was certain. He always knew just what to say to you, and he always knew just how to calm you. You felt your heart swell as he reminded you that he wanted to be with you and only you. You replayed the way he told you that he loved you in your mind. This was perfect really. He was perfect. You also knew that he really could have anyone he wanted. It would only be a matter of time before he got tired of waiting for you. Your fear of being with someone physically was the only thing holding you back from telling him that you loved him too. With love comes the physical part of a relationship; at least that’s what you understood as the natural progression of relationships.

It was no longer about you trying to keep control of your life by not letting people get to know you intimately. At this point, you were most afraid of disappointing him. You had thought constantly about being with him. You were very much attracted to him, and make out sessions always left even you feeling frustrated when you promptly ended them when they became to heated. Billy accepted the fact that maybe you just weren’t ready for that. You felt that you were ready though. You just felt stupid because this was the one thing that you didn’t understand completely and you really had no one to turn to for advice.

Chapter Text

You and Billy arrived in New Orleans finally, ready for yet another convention. You were happy that you chose someone who wasn’t necessarily in the spotlight as much as you were, but who was still a big enough part of these weekends that you were still able to spend time with him while you worked.

You had been dropped off at your hotel, the two of you settling in to your room. You had decided early on that it was no longer worth getting separate rooms anymore. One of you was going to end up in the other’s room anyway for the weekend.

You laid back on the bed, relaxing after the long flight. Billy joined you, indulging you in some cuddling that he knew you enjoyed. You were still thinking about the events from the previous night, still reeling from the fact that someone had the nerve to try to swoop in and take him away from you. You had only told him “I told you so,” once, and decided it was best to let it go after that. He had come back to you, and that was all that mattered.

Right now, you were also still thinking about how it might be a good idea to take your relationship with him to the next level. You really did like him, and he had no qualms in telling you that he loved you. You also knew that you couldn’t keep him forever if you weren’t going to put out at some point.

Since he had gotten into the habit of holding back a bot when it came to you, you decided to initiate something this time. You reached over to him, grabbing a hold of his shirt as you gently pulled him toward you. He took a hint, moving to lean over you so that he could kiss you. You sighed against his lips, always grateful to have his lips on yours. You wrapped your arms around his neck, prompting him to press his lips harder against yours. The kiss became heated, as it always did between the two of you, and he was nearly laying on top of you as your lips moved against each other, tongues tasting each other. Billy always did what he could to press his luck, it’s just who he was. There was never a make-out session where he didn’t end up grinding against you or letting his hands wander. At first, you stopped all of that before it became too embarrassing for you. Eventually, Billy learned to back off when even he realized things were getting too heated.

This time however, you didn’t want to stop him. You knew that you wanted him, and you wouldn’t push him away if things ended up going in that direction again. You felt his hand move beneath your shirt so that he could touch your skin. He paused, still kissing you, expecting you to push him away as you usually did. You made no move to do so though, and he seemed to be surprised that he was allowed to do this. You reached down to grab his hand and he began to move it away, thinking you were going to do it for him anyway, but you decided to direct him to where you wanted him. You brought his hand up and placed it on your breast, causing him to freeze completely.

He pulled back from you, looking into your eyes as if to ask what you were doing exactly. You gave him a smile, bringing his face back down to yours to continue kissing him. He became brave after a few moments, now working on touching you there. He kneaded your breast and you giggled, only stopping to gasp once his thumb found your nipple.

When he realized that you weren’t stopping him, and this was the furthest you had ever let him go this entire time the two of you had been seeing each other, he decided to press his luck even more. Without breaking the kiss, he promptly topped you, moving himself in between your legs and instantly began to grind against you. You broke your lips from him, moaning out loud as he did so, overcome at how just that action alone felt so good. You blushed, realizing that you had made such a sound and he chuckled at you before moving to focus on your neck. He placed chaste kisses along your neck, stopping occasionally to nip at your sensitive skin. You grasped onto him, focusing on the way your breathing became rapid, still turned on at the way he moved against you.

Maybe you didn’t know much about all of this, but you did know that it already felt amazing. For the first time ever, you knew that you wanted to finally be with someone, as long as that someone was him. You brought your hand down, shaking as you tried to work it between the two of you so that you could try to undo his jeans. Maybe you could at least hint to him that you were ready without having to humiliate yourself by saying it outright.

When he realized what you were doing, he gently removed your hand from his jeans, leading it back up to place it above your head. He gave you a soft smile, leaning in to kiss you on the lips gently. You were sure you were beet red by now, even more embarrassed that he had obviously shot down your advances.

He moved himself off of you, laying back onto the bed after he was sure he had put some distance between the two of you. “I’m sorry, I shouldn’t get so carried away.”

“It’s okay,” you said, trying to ease his mind. “It all felt very nice. You could have kept going.”

“I’m not going to pressure you, Y/N.”

“You’re not,” you replied quickly. You were still very much turned on and you wanted him to still be touching you and focusing on making you feel good.

“Yeah, I am. I keep forgetting that I’m with someone who hasn’t experienced that yet, and I’ll just try to be better. I want you to be comfortable with me.”

“I am comfortable with you,” you chuckled. “I mean, come on. We stay at each other’s places all the time. We make out constantly. Eventually, this relationship has to advance I guess.”

“It will,” he replied, “but, I need to remember to do things a little slower with you.”

That was not what you wanted at all. Obviously, he had been thinking a lot about how to slow down a bit, unsure of how to be with someone who maybe wasn’t ready for that part of a relationship. You, on the other hand, felt completely different. While you were nervous as hell about the idea of finally being with someone like that, you knew that you wanted your first time to be with him. The only problem now, was that you didn’t know how to vocalize that. You were far too awkward and socially challenged to even know how to speak out about something so intimate, especially with a man who was far more experienced than you were.

“I’m really sorry,” he reiterated. He reached down, grabbing your hand as he pulled it up to his face, placing a kiss on your knuckles. “I’ll slow down.”

You nodded, surprised that this had ended up in this direction, and sort of pissed that you didn’t know how to take it in the direction that you really wanted.


You sought out the girls the next morning. You didn’t have many people in your life that you could turn to with personal thing, but you were at least getting to know Kim and Briana. They weren’t as bad as you had thought they were in the beginning. Now, you had spent a little time with them, hopefully enough time to consider them sort of friends who might listen to you and offer you some advice. You found them in the green room, both of them sitting at a table, talking to each other. The space was empty otherwise; the band and Rich probably out on stage. Whoever the other guests were for the weekend either getting ready for a panel or doing photo ops. Right now was your perfect opportunity to ask the two for some advice.

“Hey ladies,” you said cheerfully as you approached them.

“Y/N,” Kim acknowledged you, “how are you?”

“Oh, I’m great,” you responded. “Hey, we’re friends, right?”

“Uh, yeah. We’re friends,” Briana replied.

“Okay, good. Because I know we’re all just starting to finally get along and all, but I’ve got something that I need to talk to someone about. And I know we’re not, like, best friends, but you’re the closest thing that I have to actual friends-”

“Wow, yeah, you’re rambling,” Briana cut in.

“I’m sorry.”

“You seem nervous,” Kim pointed out, “what’s up?”

“I just… really need some advice on something.”

“Sure, that’s what we’re here for. Shoot.”

“I’m ready to sleep with Billy,” you stated quickly. You felt your heart race as you admitted it out loud, smiling slightly at your bravery in even being able to say the words and not second guess yourself.

Kim stared at you, wide-eyed and caught off guard.

“Um, okay,” she replied. “for future reference, you don’t have to announce it to us just because we’re friends.”

You rolled your eyes at her, “I’m telling you because I need your help.”

Briana choked on her drink just then, sputtering and coughing as she too was caught by surprise at the way the conversation was going.

“I- I don’t know that I’d be much help in that area,” Kim replied, her words adding to Briana’s laughing fit. “What do you want me to do exactly?”

“Oh come on, I just need advice.”

“You need advice?” Briana said in disbelief.

“I’m going to tell you something and I want you to promise not to make fun of me.”

“We won’t make fun of you,” Kim promised.

“I’m a virgin.” Again, more words that you were afraid to say out loud, but being able to do so right now helped you feel a little more comfortable with your new friends.

Briana let out a loud cackle and you stared at her.

“Oh, you’re serious.”

“Yes, I’m serious. Is this funny to you?”

“No, not at all, I just thought you were joking.”

“It’s not a joke. I’ve never been with someone in that way, and I want him to be my first.”

“Wow, that’s a big deal Y/N.” Kim looked at you, almost as if she actually cared.

“I just- I need advice, since I’ve never done this before. I don’t really have anyone else to ask for advice. You’re the only female… friends… that I have I guess.”

“Okay, well, what kind of advice do you need?”

“How do I make him put out?” You asked seriously.

Briana laughed again. This time, nearly brought to tears at the absurdity of the entire situation.

“I’m so happy that my non-existent sex life is so hilarious to you.”

“I’m sorry-” she took a deep breath, trying to calm herself, “this is all just so awkward.”

“I don’t want to make anyone feel awkward. You know what? Nevermind, this was a stupid idea. I’ll just go buy an issue of Cosmo and hope it can help.”

“Stop,” Kim insisted, “what do you mean, how do you make him put out.?”

“I mean, I tried to hint that I wanted to be with him like that. He basically shot me down. He said he didn’t want to pressure me, so we should wait for as long as I need.”

“But, you’re ready?” Kim asked, giving you a questioning stare as if to ask if you were really ready.

“I am. I know that none of you think I’m any good for him. But, I love him. No one has ever made me feel the way that he does.”

“Sweetie, that’s great,” Kim smiled. “And for the record, I think you two are great together. No one hates you as much as you think they do. In fact, we’re all pretty excited that you’re actually talking to us for once.”

“He’s a good egg,” Briana added, finally calm enough to add to the conversation. “What you need to do it just tell him that you want him to fuck you.”

You felt your face heat up, not really shocked by her choice of words, but definitely thrown off a bit. Briana must have noticed how uncomfortable her words made you feel, because she looked at you quizzically for a moment.

“Does that weird you out?” She asked. “The ‘F’ word?”

“I don’t know. I guess when you refer to having sex as… that. Then, yeah, it’s kind of embarrassing.”

“You mean, the idea of fucking embarasses you?”

“Oh my god,” you choked out. “Do you have to say it like that?”

“Holy shit,” Briana mumbled, “I really thought you were pulling our legs. You really are a virgin, huh?”

“Why would I lie about something like that?”

“I don’t know. You do a lot of weird shit.”

“Is that really what guys want?” You asked, turning back to Kim when you realized she might be the better person to receive advice from. “They like it when you swear at them and just act… forward about sex?”

“Well, I’m not really sure what he’d be into,” she mused, “maybe he likes dirty talk. He’s quiet, so he’d probably be into it.”

“I don’t know if I can do that.”

“Look, if you really want to be with him, just tell him. You don’t have to go about it the way Bri suggested, but maybe just have a quiet night in. Talk to him, bring it up, tell him that you are ready.”

“Am I going to sound pathetic telling him that I want him in that way?”

“Honey, there’s nothing pathetic about telling a man exactly what you want,” Briana added.

“I can’t believe I’m saying this,” Kim said, looking shocked at herself. “But Bri is right on. Tell him what you want exactly. Any guy who isn’t into hearing what you want, isn’t worth the time. So, at least you’ll know.”

“Okay, thank you,” you said. You let their words sink in, taking a serious mental note on the importance of telling him what you wanted. “I’m sort of nervous about what happens when I do tell him what I want.”

“Trust me, he’ll give it to you.” Again, Briana made you blush.

“Look, I’m not going to give you an entire play by play on how to have sex,” Kim cut in, “it will just come naturally. You’ll know what to do, he’ll know what to do. And, again, make sure you tell him what you want and what feels good.”

“Thank you,” you replied, honestly grateful that they had at least listened to your concerns and seemed to take the time to give you some actual advice. Not only were you new to the whole boyfriend thing, but you were also new to understanding what it was like to have friends. At least it seemed as if you were learning to work on your lack of knowledge in both types of relationships.


That night, when you and Billy returned to your room after dinner, you decided to make your move again. You were tired of waiting now. You didn’t really know how to properly initiate something like this, but you also knew that he respected you so much, that he wasn’t going to be the one to push the topic.

When he joined you in bed, pulling you in for more cuddling that you always engaged in, you quickly made the move. You reached for his pants, slipping your hand into them and taking a hold of him. He gasped in surprise, grasping onto your hand to make you stop.

“What are you doing?” He asked. He looked at you as if you had done something you shouldn’t have. You felt yourself blush yet again, wondering if you were seriously that big of an idiot to mess even that up.

“I- I’m sorry,” you stuttered, “did I do something wrong.”

“No,” he replied, still holding your arm as you kept your hand in the same spot. “You just- you can’t grab someone like that.”

“Why not?”

“Because,” he replied, sounding flustered, “because now I’m suddenly turned on.”

“That’s a good thing,” you grinned, leaning in to kiss him.

“It’s only a good thing if we do something to, uh, relieve the situation.”

“Okay,” you agreed, kissing him heatedly again. This was going a whole lot better than you had expected it to.

He pushed you away from him just then, removing your hand from him and turning away from you as he tried to pull himself together. Again, you felt that twinge of embarrassment. You weren’t positive, but you didn’t think the events leading up to sleeping with someone was supposed to be this awkward.

You stayed where you were, sort of shocked that he was still turning you down. You didn’t touch him anymore, wondering now if maybe he just didn’t want you in that way.

“I don’t want to ever make you feel like I’m pressuring you,” he explained. “I respect that you’ve waited so long to be with anyone. Don’t think that you have to give in when it comes to me.”

“You’re not pressuring me. I want to be with you. I want this.”

He avoided your gaze, looking as if he were engaged in some sort of inner dialogue now. He was thinking hard, and you couldn’t help but feel as if he was genuinely questioning whether you were ready.

You took his face in your hands, leading him back to you until he was looking at you again.

“I know what I want,” you said boldly, suddenly feeling empowered as you decide to take control of the fact that he was holding back just because of the fact that you were a virgin. “I want you. I want to be with you.”

“Are you sure? You’re not just doing this because you think that it’s what I want.”

“I’m pretty sure this is what you want,” you replied, grinning at him as you kissed him again.

“You’re not wrong.”

“If it’s what we both want, then why can’t we just have it?

“I don’t want you to regret it. Especially since you’ve never been with anyone before.”

“How could I regret being with someone that I love?” You heard the words roll off your tongue finally. It wasn’t that you felt that you needed to return those words to him, you knew he’d never pressure you into anything, but you genuinely meant it now. You did love him, and you finally felt okay with saying it out loud.

Billy said nothing. He simply gave you a smile and a pleased look when he heard what you had said. He kissed you back. This time, leaning you back against the bed as he moved over you again. You enjoyed the feel of him on top of you, and right now was no different. You gripped onto his hips, pulling at him to indicate that you weren’t joking about what you had said before. You had been thinking about this for some time, and you wanted it to happen finally.

He took his time with you; focusing on kissing you, touching you, and undressing you slowly. By the time you were both undressed and ready, you were nervous. You rested your hands across his shoulders, aware of how shaky they were and how worried you were that you’d disappoint him. The idea of sex itself didn’t scare you; it was your lack of experience in that area that you were freaking out about. You couldn’t bear the idea of losing him just because you didn’t know what you were doing.

“Are you sure about this?” He asked when he noticed how nervous you were.

“I am,” you nodded. “I just don’t want to disappoint you.”

He gave you a crooked smile, kissing you softly. “You could never disappoint me,” he replied.

He teased you for a moment; touching you where you wanted him most. You were already gasping and moaning just by the way his fingers felt inside of you. You were being loud and you felt embarrassed at how you were unable to hold back. He continued to touch you and you learned that biting down on your lip helped in muffling the sounds that you were making. He moved his hand from your core and you let out a whine at the loss of contact. Not wanting to make you wait, he met your eyes with his as adjusted himself between your legs and he pushed into you finally. Your focus on being quiet dissipated for a moment as your mouth dropped open as he filled you up. You let out a guttural moan once he was completely inside you. You caught yourself again, now trying to stop yourself from doing that. You quieted yourself and he leaned in to give you a kiss before he began to thrust into you.

The last thing you wanted to do was make too much noise again. That had been embarrassing already. But, your senses were overwhelmed; your body aching and trembling as he made love to you. He was watching you, breathing quietly and letting out low moans as he moved against you. Despite the fact that this felt so good, and your body wanted to be vocal about just how good it was; you bit your lip, stifling the sounds so you wouldn’t humiliate yourself.

You only occasionally let your mouth fall open slightly, pressing your head back against the bed, eyes closed, moaning as quietly as you could. Then, you’d go back to pressing your lips together, focused on not being too loud. He definitely noticed what you were doing after a while; smiling when he could tell that you were close to your release, also realizing that you were trying so hard to hold back in letting him know how good it was.

“Are you okay,” he asked, obviously checking in on you. You nodded, letting out a quiet moan in place of the word you wanted to say.

He leaned in, pressing his lips to yours as he panted against your mouth. He slipped his tongue past your lips, prompting you to part them which only resulted in a much louder moan to escape. You blushed, realizing just how loud it had been. He only smiled harder, still pressing his lips against yours as he thrust harder into you. The fact that he was kissing you like this made it so that you couldn’t bite your lip to hold back your sounds. Your moans and gasps only grew louder and you couldn’t help but feel humiliated.

“This will be so much better if you just let go,” he whispered as he moved his lips against your ear, not losing a beat in his movements. Maybe it was the way he thrust into you, making your pleasure build. Perhaps it was the feel of his breath, hot against your ear as he encouraged you to let yourself go for once. Whatever it was, you did as he suggested; throwing your head back as your climax peaked, not even able to pay attention to how vocal you were being now.

You grasped on to him tightly as you came, moaning loudly and gasping, no longer caring about being subdued. This all just felt too damn good to worry about holding back, and you knew now that you didn’t have to hold back with him. He came as well, swearing slightly under his breath, your name slipping past his lips in a quiet praise. You watched him; blushing again at the fact that you were the one who was making him feel this good.

He pressed his forehead against yours, still moving against you slowly; causing you to gasp at how sensitive you were now. He chuckled when he realized what he was doing to you and he leaned in to kiss you slowly and passionately. Your noticed that your grip on his back was still tight, surely there would be marks left. So, you focused on relaxing, letting your body melt under the weight of him; your heart rate slowing now that you were coming down from your high.

When the kiss was over, he pulled back, looking you in your eyes with a pleased grin on his face.

“I love you,” he said. He reached a hand up to brush it along your cheek.

“I love you too.” you breathed out. For the first time ever, you could finally say those words to someone and actually mean them.

Chapter Text

You woke the next morning to the feeling of Billy holding you. It wasn’t unusual for you to wake up next to him; but this time, you couldn’t help but blush when you recalled what had happened the night before. This was certainly the first time you woke up next to him while both of you were unclothed. It was also the first time you would wake up with someone after having slept with them the night before. You giggled as you felt his lips brush against your shoulder, kissing you softly as you fought through your sleepy haze. He let his hands wander along your skin, probably thrilled that he was now allowed to do so without having you stop him.

“Well, hello,” you giggled as you turned around to face him. He always looked adorable in the mornings, but right now, you felt an extra bit of attraction to him as you caught glimpse of his post-coital bliss. He kissed you on the lips, then leaned back to look at you.

“Last night…” he trailed off, smiling hard as he seemed to be reliving the events in his mind.

“Was amazing,” you finished his sentence.

“Are you okay?” He asked. You did love the way he constantly checked in on you, making sure that you were comfortable with how things began to progress in your relationship.

“I was okay after the first time,” you promised him, “and I was okay during the second round. I’m still okay. Better than okay.”

“God, I love you,” he breathed out, kissing you again. You smiled against his lips, moving so that you could wrap your arms around him. You wanted to hold him and never let him go. You were still buzzing with the excitement and nervousness from last night, but you had no regrets about having finally pushed things in this direction with him. You were only slightly afraid of the knowledge that you really did love him and he had been your first.

“Come here,” you whispered, pulling him toward you as you laid on your back, encouraging him to move on top of you. You kissed him again, letting your tongue taste his, giggling as you felt his beard tickle your face. Even after all this time, you never did get used to the beard.

“Again?” He asked as he broke the kiss. He grinned at you, moving himself between your thighs. You could feel his erection already and you gasped as he moved against you.

“Is- is that okay?” You asked, wondering now if you were pushing it. Maybe you were asking too much. All you knew was that sex with him felt good and you wanted him as often as you could have him. You felt stupid as you thought that maybe you weren’t supposed to want him this much.

“It’s more than okay,” he chuckled.

You let him kiss you again as he teased you for a moment. It wasn’t until you whined against his lips, bucking your hips against him that he finally gave in to what you wanted. You moaned as you felt him fill you up again, smiling at how amazing he continued to feel inside of you.

“I love you,” you whispered as he began to move against you. You felt his lips against your neck as he offered a quiet ‘I love you’ as well.

You had never told anyone that you had loved them before. In fact, you had never loved someone ever. Upon the first moments of Billy taking the time to get to know you, you knew there had been an attraction right away. You spent a lot of time trying to convince yourself that you were only attracted to him because he was paying you attention. You had never really considered him even if you had technically known him for some time. For months, you had gone about your days, working like you were expected to, not really thinking about getting to know anyone else on the convention circuit. Billy was not who you would ever think of when you considered what your ‘type’ would be. He wasn’t even an actor. He played rock music and sat around the green room making jokes with the guys and generally annoying you along with everyone else.

Then there was that beard. That stupid beard that you had hated and maybe had mentioned to him in passing that it might look nicer if he shaved. Of course, he wasn’t about to let you tell him what to do.

You had told him that you loved him though. Last night after he made love to you, you felt overcome with a wave of emotions for him. That’s not to say that you hadn’t felt something for him all along; you were actually terrified when you realized that you might be feeling love for him. That fear, however, washed away after you had been with him intimately for the first time. For the first time, you felt safe telling someone that you cared about them. You felt safe saying those words, because he made you feel safe.

Right now though, he was mouthing at your neck as he thrust inside of you. That beard tickling your skin as he worked. You let out a sigh and then a loud moan at the way he felt inside of you paired with what he was doing to your neck right now. You gripped onto him tightly, already feeling the build up of heat in your abdomen. You began to pant heavily, grabbing his face to bring it to yours so that you could kiss him again. You groaned against his mouth as he pushed deeper into you, the concern that you had had the night before about making too much noise had disappeared completely. He encouraged you to make noise, and you certainly didn’t want to disappoint.

“Fuck, Y/N,” he muttered as he broke the kiss. He too was breathing hard, groaning as he continued to move. He thrust deeper inside of you and you pressed your head back against the pillow, mouth agape as he hit you in just the right spot.

You cried out as your orgasm suddenly peaked; grasping onto him as you came. He smiled as he watched you come undone for him, giving you just a few more thrusts until he came as well. He nuzzled against your neck as his movements slowed; both of you taking a moment to catch your breaths.

“Mmm,” you hummed happily, “is this really what I’ve been missing out on my entire life?”

He chuckled as he leaned up to look at you, “I really just hope that it’s only this good because of me.”

“We can go with that,” you smiled in return.

“We should get ready,” he began, indicating that you two still had work to do today and maybe shouldn’t have gotten caught up in the moment. You glanced at the clock, realizing that you had limited time to make yourself presentable today.

“Move so I can shower.” You playfully tried to push him off of you and he let himself collapse on you instead.

“I don’t wanna. I just want to stay here like this all day.”

“Trust me, I would rather do this all day as well,” you replied, “but, we have jobs.”

“They’ll be fine without us.”

“Seriously,” you argued, “I have to get ready. So do you.”

“Fine,” he mumbled as he rolled off of you. “Do I at least get to join you in the shower?”

You stood up from the bed, carefully wrapping yourself into the bedsheet that you had inexplicably found on the floor. The room was a mess, scattered with discarded clothing from the night before. You became nervous suddenly at the thought of it. Why the idea of him showering with you threw you off even after you had slept with him, you had no idea.

“What?” You chuckled. “You can wait until I’m done.”

He raised a brow at you as he watched you gather your own clothes from the ground. You set your stuff aside and quickly began to pick up his clothing, tossing them in his direction.

“You can’t kick me out,” he reminded you. “This is my room too.”

“Haha,” you mumbled. “I’m not trying to kick you out, I just figured you’d want to… cover up.”

“I’m good,” he smiled, “and you really won’t let me join you?”

“No,” you replied. You laughed uncomfortably and you knew he would catch on to the fact that you were being awkward about this. You internally scolded yourself, knowing that there was no reason to still be nervous around him; and yet, you couldn’t help but to panic at the idea of it.

“Why not?”

“Because…” you trailed off now, trying to think of a way to explain to him that you were uncomfortable by the thought of it for some reason. Sure, you had seen quite a bit of each other last night, but it was a little different to see each other now. You felt your face heat up, suddenly worried about what he might think of you now that he was seeing you this way in daylight.

“Fine” he sighed. He stood up from the bed, stretching and standing there completely naked and you couldn’t help but blush at the sight of him. He definitely noticed as you quickly averted your eyes from him while he put on some shorts. “You know, we did have sex; a few times… you really don’t have to be shy.”

“I’m sorry.” You darted your eyes to him, still feeling yourself blush which only made you look away again.

“No, I’m sorry. I just forget how innocent you were before me,” he stated proudly.

“Are you making fun of me again?”

“Never. I thinks it’s adorable.”

Once he was somewhat covered, he approached you, wrapping his arms around your waist and leaning in to kiss you softly.

“You also don’t have to be so shy with this,” he mumbled as he tugged at the bed-sheet that was still wrapped around your body. He yanked it off of you, letting his hands wander as the sheet fell to the floor. He pulled back to watch you as he touched your body, causing goosebumps in the wake of where his hands made contact. “You are really cute when you blush though.”

You scrambled to reach for the sheet just then, embarrassed that he was now looking at you naked in the light.

“Hey,” he began as he stopped you, “you’re gorgeous. Really, you don’t have anything that you need to hide from me.”

“I’ve just- No one has ever seen me like this before. I don’t want to disappoint you now that literally everything is visible.”

“Are you kidding?” He chuckled. “I’m in a relationship with the most beautiful woman in the world. Trust me, I could look at this all day.”

“Maybe not all day,” you smiled.

“If only,” he sighed. You laughed and gave him a quick kiss before you headed to the bathroom alone.


You thought a lot about last night as you got ready for the day. You couldn’t wipe the smile off your face as you recalled how wonderful it had all been. Sure, you had been nervous as hell, but those nerves disappeared quickly once things actually became heated. You never really knew what to expect when the time would come for you to finally be with someone, but Billy didn’t disappoint. Maybe he had been right, maybe it had been so perfect because it was him.

It wasn’t that you had remained a virgin for so long just because you believed in waiting for the right person. It really had been about having some control over your own life for once. The older you got, the scarier it had become to actually think about being with someone.

You had never trusted anyone. Not since you had a mother who disliked you so much and only talked to you when she wanted something, a father who chose to not be present in your life, and people working for you who did what they could to control just about everything in your life. The idea of trusting Billy was a big step for you. Your past experiences with men were never good ones. You generally avoided your male co-workers the best that you could. When Billy had decided to make his presence known to you, it had thrown you off completely. Generally, men approached you and wasted no time in hitting on you and trying to get in your pants. Billy was different though. He actually wanted to date you. He wanted to know you and he wanted you to know him.

He had stayed even when sex was completely off the table. He controlled himself well even after months of dating you, sleeping in the same bed as you, and heavy make-out sessions that you would bring to a screeching halt when you realized it was all too much. Your choice in finally sleeping with him came about just because of the fact that you wanted to be with someone who loved you and didn’t want to control you. He made you feel loved. And just as important, you loved him.

You were broken from your thoughts when Billy came out of the bathroom after his shower. You watched him as he exited, wearing only a towel around his waist as he fumbled through his suitcase for clothes. You finished your makeup regimen with some lipstick all while you tried to make it less obvious that you were staring at him. You had to take a minute to let the fact that this man was actually yours sink in.

Perhaps your relationship hadn’t been so great in the beginning; you often thought to yourself that he wasn’t your type. You also told him that the beard was unattractive on many occasions. Despite the fact that you were kind of a bitch to him at first, he stuck around.  Not once did he ever change anything about himself for you; and you were now glad that he never did. He had grown on you. His quirkiness and unconventional good-looks were the main reasons that the two of you were here right now. You adored him, you even adored all of the things that you used to not like about him… even that damn beard.

He was ready before you were, sitting on the couch, waiting patiently for you finish fussing with your hair.

“You don’t have to wait,” you told him as you finally began to dig through your clothes for a shirt. Maybe you were still uncomfortable with lounging around naked in front of him, even after everything; but you figured your bra was an okay first step toward becoming comfortable with your body around him. He didn’t seem to mind the entire time you spent getting ready.

“Of course I do, can’t let my lady walk downstairs all alone.”

“I’m just about ready,” you replied as you sat on the couch to put your shoes on. You looked around the room, making sure you had everything you needed for the day as you grabbed your bag from the table. You grasped onto Billy’s hand and let him lead you from the room.

“You know,” Billy began as the two of you stepped onto the elevator, “I think this will be the first time that people actually see us in public as a couple. I mean, during a convention anyway.”

“You’re right,” you replied. “We haven’t been really public at all, unless you count the show last week. But, this is a lot more people.”

“Everyone knows,” he added, “the Instagram picture got a lot of attention.”

“I’m going to get a lot of questions,” you chuckled. You took a deep breath, realizing this would be the weekend in which people would most likely ask about your relationship. You knew it would happen the moment you chose to be open about it. And, you were also okay with it. You had prepared yourself for how you would handle certain questions that may be thrown at you this weekend.

“So, how do we handle this?” He eyed you carefully, gauging your reaction.

“What do you mean?”

“I mean, am I legitimately allowed to be your boyfriend? Or, are there lines I shouldn’t cross?”

You gave him a incredulous look. “If you’re asking if you can hold my hand and kiss me in public, then yes, that’s okay. If people ask about us, I’m going to be honest. You should be as well.”

“Okay, I just didn’t want to do anything to make you uncomfortable.”

You smiled at him, still not used to how sweet and considerate he was toward you.

The two of you walked hand-in-hand out of the hotel to the car that was waiting for you to bring you to the convention. Some of the others were already outside, many of them doing a double-take when they noticed you holding hands. It’s not like they didn’t know that you and Billy had been together for some time, they had even witness the two of you kiss despite how insistent you were with not engaging in PDA at first. Right now, you really didn’t care anymore. You wanted the world to know that he was yours and you were his.

“Someone’s in a good mood again,” Stephen pointed out as the two of you got into one of the cars with him and the rest of the band. “Actually, both of you are.”

“Someone got lucky,” Rob teased with a smirk.

You felt yourself blush again, this time feeling more embarrassed than usual. It was one thing to have maybe discussed the possibility of you and Billy sleeping together with the girls, it was quite another to have the guys call you out on it.

“Shut up,” Billy chuckled. You felt him wrap his arm around your shoulders, pulling you closer to him as you waited out the drive to the convention in silence.


“Hey, can I talk to you?” You asked Billy once the group had made their way to the green room. Billy followed as you grabbed his hand and led him off to a quiet corner of the room.

“What’s up?”

“Did you say something to the guys about last night?”

“What?” He asked, giving you a confused look, “no, why?”

“I mean, they obviously knew.”

“They were teasing,” Billy laughed. “I mean, come on, we’re both in really great moods this morning. We’re dating, and, it’s not like we haven’t been sharing the same room for the last few months. Of course they would think that we’re sleeping together.”

He leaned in to you, pressing you against the wall as he tried to kiss you. You quickly turned your face from him.

“Billy, everyone is here.”

“So much for being able to kiss you in public,” he muttered.

“Maybe it’s a little more difficult for me to let you when I’m here thinking that you ran off and told your friends that you finally got laid last night. You probably told them that I was a virgin too.” You didn’t mean for it to come out so spiteful, but you were having a hard time believing that the guys would just say things like that out of the blue. If there was one thing that you disliked more than everyone making fun of you, it was the idea that Billy of all people could talk about you to other people. You didn’t want everyone to have more reasons to think poorly of you, and you certainly didn’t want to lose trust in him especially after you had decided to be intimate with him.

He let out a much louder laugh, stroking your arm as he tried to contain himself. When he noticed your stern expression, he stopped suddenly.

“You are actually serious? You really think that I just tell everyone things that go on between us, that I talk about you like that?”

“Well, I don’t know for sure.”

“Stop it, you’re being a brat again,” he said, a disapproving look crossing his face. “I would never do that. First of all, I was literally with you all night and all morning. Like I had the time to go and announce it to everyone. Besides, even if I did, how is that any worse than you telling the girls that you were planning to seduce me?”

“I- I did not tell them that,” you stuttered out. You felt yourself become flustered, knowing that you had been caught somehow.

“Yeah, you did,” he corrected you, “I mean, talking to them about it beforehand is pretty much the same. How do I know that you’re not going to run off and give them details?”

“Who told you that?”

“Briana,” he replied. “She told me yesterday that I needed to make sure to… take care of you in bed… and that you were worried about disappointing me.”

“What a bitch,” you mumbled. Now, you were even more humiliated. Not only had you trusted her and Kim, but you had probably told them more than you should have.

“No, not a bitch. It was sweet, the way she was looking out for you. Although, I wish you had just come to me if you were so nervous. You don’t have to be nervous with me Y/N, and you could never disappoint me.”

“I’m sorry… I just- I wanted advice and I don’t really have anyone to go to. They’re the only girls that I sort of know and get along with. I didn’t realize that one of them would betray me.”

“It’s fine. Like I said, she just wanted to make sure that I treated you well.” He pressed you against the wall again, leaning in to kiss your neck. “Did I treat you well?” He whispered against your ear.

Your breath hitched at how he went from the usual playful Billy to this suddenly dominant man. You nodded against him, not pushing him away even though he was kissing you like this while everyone else was present.

“Make sure you tell her,” he replied as he pulled away from you. He gave you a sly grin before placing a chaste kiss to your lips.

“I’m sorry,” you reiterated. “I shouldn’t have gotten angry at you.”

“It’s okay, I understand. You’re still sort of innocent, it’s cute. And just for the record, I don’t kiss and tell, not when it comes to you. But, I don’t mind if you do.”

You couldn’t help but grin at him. Here you were, calling him out on something that you knew deep down he wouldn’t do, yet he was still willing to put up with you. You had been sort of pissed at the idea of him talking about your relationship, but he seemed to be unfazed at the fact that you actually had. Maybe you could do better by not freaking out over these stupid things. Of course everyone would think that the two of you had been physical. Nothing you did would lead them to believe otherwise.

Before you knew it, Billy was already being called away. You were here for work obviously, and while you wanted to be around him all day, you quickly remembered that both of you had busy days ahead of you starting right now. He kissed you again before heading off toward the guys as they filed out of the room. You waved to him, still smiling as you watched him leave.

Already you felt a hint of sadness when he was gone. Maybe it was the fact that things had become a lot more serious between the two of you, but you missed him already. You made a mental note of your schedule for the rest of the weekend. You had a lot more to do today than you did yesterday, and you knew that Billy would be onstage a lot. Then, there was the concert tonight. You sighed, wondering if the two of you would have any time together today.

“This is going to be a long weekend,” you said to yourself as you stared at the door.

Chapter Text

The weekend was going by just as slowly as you had expected it to. Day one mostly consisted of you hanging out in the green room while Billy remained on stage most of the time. When he did get a break in between introducing panels; those breaks were filled with photo ops and autographs. Mostly, you spend the day stealing quick kisses as you passed by each other on your way to separate things. At lunch, you had been able to spend a couple of hours together, which sort of made up for the busy morning.

You had never felt so dependent on anyone before. Right now, you realized that you were feeling overly sad that you weren’t getting to spend enough time with him.

After lunch, you were both back to work; your own panel starting right away. You stood backstage as the band and Rich introduced you. You bounded out as they played your song; waving to everyone and making an immediate move to Billy simply out of habit. You kissed him softly, then realizing your mistake. You blushed as there was a reaction from the audience, mostly applause and whistling. Billy simply grinned at you, giving your hand a reassuring squeeze as the men left the stage.

“I almost forgot that the cat was out of the bag already,” you said into the microphone. The audience laughed and you assumed that the absence of heckling from them indicated that they didn’t hate you as much as you thought they did. Even fans of the show didn’t know you very well. They knew your character and mostly hated her, but every convention allowed you to meet people who seemed to like you as a person. Most of this was because they didn’t really know you. You had a public persona for sure; a lot nicer and fairly approachable compared to what you were like in real life. You only thought that they would dislike the idea of you dating one of their beloved band members based on how your co-workers reacted in the beginning.

Even with them, you still weren’t quite as involved as everyone else and accepted into the small but close group. That was something that you truly wanted to work on.

You answered questions mostly about your character; there were always questions about whether or not she would stick around for the entire season and what her character development would mean for the Winchesters. You answered everything the best you could, making sure to allow yourself to be open and friendly.

“We know that you’re dating Billy; and I think a lot of us were sort of surprised by that. You seem like you’re opposites. So, I was wondering; what did you find that you had in common with him, and what was your first date like?” You listened intently as the young fan asked her question. It was bound to happen. Someone eventually would ask questions. You smiled in her direction, suddenly asking yourself the same question. What did you have in common with him? She wasn’t wrong. You and Billy were polar opposites. You really had nothing in common. Yet, in your mind, the two of you made perfect sense. You took a moment, wondering if you should make up some lie about little things that maybe the two of you enjoyed, you were good at lying.

“Well, I’ll answer the last part first. Our first date was just dinner. He took me to dinner and we talked. The second date though, he took me to play laser tag.” You chuckled, shaking your head as you recalled the first real, and strangest date you had ever been on. “I had never done something like that, so it was memorable. I was winning too, until he cheated.” The audience laughed along with you and you were taken by surprise when the band made their way onto the stage, indicating that your panel was over already. You caught sight of Billy and grinned at him as he smirked at you.

“Billy cheated at laser tag?” Rich asked into the microphone.

“”Yeah he did, he diverted my attention and took advantage of the fact that I was caught off-guard.”

“Billy,” Rich continued, “you didn’t let the lady win?”

Billy, who was setting up his guitar at the moment, shook his head as he mouthed the word ‘no’. He never was one for speaking on stage, and this was no exception.

“And how did he win your heart if he couldn’t even let you win at a game?”

“There’s just something about him…” you trailed off as you held his gaze for a moment. “Are you guys playing me off?”

“Well, you didn’t finish the question,” Rob stated. “What do you two have in common?”

“Honestly,” you began, deciding that maybe honesty was the best policy right now, “not a lot. We’re very different people, which is why I think I was just as surprised as everyone else when I realized I sort of adored him.”

“And that works for you?” Rob asked. “Being with someone that you have nothing in common with?”

“Yeah, it does. I mean, we have some things in common. Our jobs are similar, we both love music, and we both love romantic comedies.”

Billy laughed out loud and you grinned, knowing that he only tolerated them for your sake.

“I think the biggest thing we have in common is that we really sort of like each other.”

“Based on the way you can’t keep your hands to yourselves, I’d say it’s a lot more than like.” You blushed at Rich’s statement, nodding in agreement. “Thank you Y/N, did they treat you well?”

“They did,” you replied. You waved to the crowd as the band began to play you off. You thanked everyone as you made your way off stage, stopping briefly to give Billy a quick kiss before you left.

You waited for him offstage. The intro of the next guest was quick and Billy found you shortly after your panel.

“That seemed to be fairly painless,” Billy said.

“It went very well. It wasn’t scary at all.”

“You up for a night out? The after karaoke party plans are in the works.”

“Really? You want me to go out with you and your friends?” You asked hesitantly.

“Of course I do,” he replied. “If you’re up for it. If not, we can just stay in and make-out.”

“Mmm,” you hummed as you leaned in closer to him, “sounds enticing. But, I’m not opposed to a night out. I haven’t gone out in ages.”

“Good, it will be fun.”


You had a difficult time keeping up with the others when you all finally did meet up at a nearby bar. It seemed as if they had all pre-gamed during karaoke, which you sat out on. Once you were all sat at a table, the drinks didn’t stop coming. You intended to pace yourself, but Kim and Briana were having none of that as they encouraged you to take shots and indulge in various drinks. You wanted to fit in. You wanted to not seem like such a bore anymore. So, you tried to drink as everyone around you did.

Eventually, you were feeling really good; so you kept drinking as the drinks went down easier. You were having a good time for once in your life. You sat back as everyone around you talked and told stories, and it didn’t take long for you to join in on the conversations. You finally felt like part of the group.

“You know, you’re actually a lot of fun when you want to be,” Rob pointed out. “I always thought you were stuck-up. I’m not saying that you’re not, but you’re a little bit cooler than I expected.”

“Thanks?”

“No, really. Who knew there was a fun girl hidden behind all the stuffiness?”

“Okay, I get it.”

“Come on Y/N,” Kim shouted over the music, “let’s dance.”

Kim grabbed your hand and pulled you to your feet, leading you out to the dance-floor. You glanced at Billy, almost as if you were asking him if it was okay. He simply smiled at you and you let the girls get you out there to dance. Fun was never a big part of your life. Fun is what had gotten you into trouble in the past. You had constantly sought out approval from the people who worked for you whenever it came to maybe doing something fun. Since you were usually shot down, encouraged to just keep a clean image, the idea of fun was lost to you. You didn’t dance, you didn’t drink like this, and you certainly never put yourself in a position of drinking with a group of people.

Tonight you were feeling good. You had indulged in a lot of drinks, surprised at the way this group kept them coming. You joined the girls on the dance-floor, taking cues from them on how to move. Another thing you didn’t do; dance. Perhaps it was the fact that you were beginning to feel more comfortable around them, or maybe it was the way your head buzzed and your body tingled as the alcohol caught up to you; but you started to dance, for once not caring what anyone thought of you.

You stayed on the dance-floor for some time, realizing that this was a lot of fun. The girls were fun and they encouraged you to stay with them. You looked at Billy occasionally, who was still sitting at the table with some of the guys. You didn’t want to be that girl who looked to your boyfriend for attention, but you found it hard not to. This was all so new to you. You were in a relationship, you were out with people who might be close to being your friends, you were drinking and having fun; it was all very far from who you had been just months ago.

“I like you,” Briana shouted. She brought you from your daze and you focused on her instead of Billy. “I thought you were going to be lame, but you’re not that lame.”

“I am really lame,” you laughed. “I think it’s all the alcohol that’s helping though.”

“I don’t think that’s true,” she replied. “I think it has a lot to do with that guy.” She pointed towards Billy and you smiled. She was right. Billy brought out the best in you. You were a different person now that you were with him, someone that people actually liked.

While you were busy chatting with the girls, you couldn’t help but notice that Billy seemed to be busy chatting with some girls as well. You eyed him when you noticed a couple of women standing at the bar talking to him. It looked as if he were simply ordering drinks, but the girls were laughing and talking to him as if they knew him. You didn’t want to be jealous. You had no reason to be. He was hit on often and you knew it was nothing to worry about. You had been down this road with him before; the night of the Louden Swain show when you pointed out that a really good friend of his was simply flirting with him and he mistook it for her just being friendly. He had handled that just fine when she had tried to take him home; so this right now should not have been any different.

It wasn’t until the woman touched him that you saw red. You didn’t know why you were filled with rage so suddenly; especially when you clearly saw Billy step away from her immediately, breaking any contact between them. You watched as he pointed in your direction, talking to the girls who glanced over your way before moving on.

Billy returned to his spot at the table, drinks in tow, and you decided it was the best time to make an idiot out of yourself.

“She was pretty,” you pointed out as you approached him. He glanced up at you, giving you a confused look, but knowing immediately what you were talking about.

“Uh, yeah, I guess so,” Billy replied. He stared at you as he took a drink of his beer.

“I’ve never seen you flirt with another girl in front of me before. Or, is that just something you do when you think I’m not paying attention?” You didn’t mean to say it out loud. The last thing you wanted to do was cause an argument. But, you were constantly questioning Billy and his intentions, mostly because people just didn’t like you. You still had a difficult time understanding why he liked you so much, and seeing that girl flirt with him brought out your insecurities even more than you could imagine. The fact that you were drunk probably didn’t help.

Billy sighed heavily, pinching the bridge of his nose between his fingers as if you were already giving him a headache.

“Don’t do this,” he muttered. “Please. She was flirting but you know damn well that I shot her down.”

“Really? You actually recognized flirting this time?”

“Yeah, we’re not doing this right now.”

“I think we are.” You didn’t know why you were pushing it. You definitely knew that there was no reason to be angry with him, you saw him end that entire thing before it even became an issue. Still, you were feeling vulnerable and insecure. Someone had to pay for that.

“You need to go back to the hotel,” he said as he stood up. He reached for your arm and you pulled away from him, staggering as you made the sudden movement.

“Don’t touch me,” you slurred, “I’m mad at you.”

“Come on, you’re not mad at me. You’re just getting emotional and I probably shouldn’t have let you drink so much.”

“Are you okay sweetie?” Kim asked as she stepped alongside you.

“I’m fine. I’m just mad at my boyfriend.”

“Stop, there’s no reason to be mad,” she replied as she wrapped an arm around you.

“So it’s okay for him to hit on that pretty girl in front of me?”

“He wasn’t hitting on anyone, Y/N.”

You swayed in your spot, vaguely listening to what they were telling you. You had a brief moment of realizing that it was time to stop. You hadn’t been this drunk in a long time and although you were wasted, you at least knew you had had way too much. You were behaving like a jerk; and although you recognized that, you couldn’t stop yourself.

“I need to leave,” you stated as you turned your attention away from being mad at Billy for absolutely nothing. You fumbled for your belongings, flinging your purse over your shoulder as you immediately turned and headed for the exit. Billy grabbed your arm, stopping you before you could wander off alone.

“Wait,” he said, “let me get our tab paid first.”

You pulled yourself away from him again, “I don’t want to go with you. I’m fine.”

“You’re not leaving here by yourself.”

“I’m a big girl,” you replied, trying to adjust your eyes to focus on him. “Why am I so mad at you?”

“I don’t know,” he chuckled. “You drank too much. I’ll walk you back to the hotel.”

“Please don’t. Just leave me alone.”

“Absolutely not,” he insisted. You felt yourself growing more upset as he tried to hold onto you again. You were suddenly emotional, not wanting him to touch you for some reason. You kept telling yourself to calm down, you had no reason to get like this, but you couldn’t rationalize your jealousy in any other way right now.

“I can get her back safely,” Misha chimed in. Out of everyone, he was probably the least drunk and the only co-worker that you actually got along with on set. It was rare to spend time with him like this off-set, but you knew just by working with him that he was the one person here who never did judge you.

“You sure?” Billy asked.

“Yeah, I’ve got my panel tomorrow anyway, I shouldn’t stay out any longer.”

“Are you okay with that, Y/N?” Billy asked as he brushed a hand against your face.

“As long as it’s not you.”

“Okay,” he grinned, “I’ll see you tomorrow when you’ve forgotten why you were mad at me.”

Before you could get too deep into fighting with Billy, Misha wrapped an arm around your waist and let you from the bar out into the chilly night. He began to walk with you, which mostly meant that he was dragging you along as you tried hard to figure out how to make your legs work. You were spinning as you let him lead you, feeling out of control in your thoughts and movements, which upset you even more. You started crying when you realized that you didn’t feel in control of anything.

Misha stopped, helping you to lean against a wall as you sobbed.

“Are you okay?” He asked. “Are you sure you don’t want Billy?”

You shook your head, feeling even more dizzy as you did so. Your face was numb, but you could still feel it wet with tears.

“Please don’t cry,” Misha began. He started to wipe your tears away with his hand and you stopped crying immediately. Of course, you weren’t supposed to cry in front of people. As drunk as you were right now, you still remembered that it was a bad idea to show that weak side of yourself.

“I was really horrible to him.”

“A little, nothing that he can’t handle though.”

“Why did I act like that?”

“Because you’re drunk and emotional. Some people are just emotional drunks.”

“I’m never drinking again.”

“Well you were having a lot of fun up until a few minutes ago. Maybe next time we just figure out when it’s a good time to cut you off.”

“I should go apologize.”

“Don’t. Save it for tomorrow when you’re sober and less likely to get mad again. Besides, I promised I’d get you back to the hotel.”

You let out a dramatic sigh as you tried to sober up. You pressed your face against Misha’s chest, hoping he could ground you somewhat. You didn’t like feeling this way. Misha embraced you, rubbing his hands along your back and then along your arms. You felt him place a soft kiss to your cheek and you smiled to yourself.

“You are freezing. Where’s your jacket?”

“A jacket doesn’t really go with this outfit.”

He pulled his own jacket off, draping it over your shoulders. He wrapped his arm around your waist and you let your head relax against him as he began to walk with you again.

Once you were back to the hotel, Misha helped you to your room. He made sure you took some pain reliever to hopefully offset the headache you would have tomorrow and he encouraged you to drink a bottle of water. You laid in bed, grateful to be there despite the fact that the entire room began to spin the second your head hit the pillow.

“Thank you,” you slurred as Misha tucked you in.

“Not a problem at all.”

“Do you think Billy is going to hate me?”

“No. How could he? He adores you.”

“I really love him,” you mumbled. You closed your eyes, suddenly feeling very tired.

“I know you do,” Misha replied. “Go to sleep and talk to him tomorrow. Call if you need anything.”

You kept your eyes shut, listening as Misha left the room. You didn’t have a chance to think too much about what an ass you had been, you passed out before you could make yourself feel worse.


You woke up the next morning expecting to wake up next to Billy. He wasn’t there however; and you felt a pang of sadness that he hadn’t at least come back to the room to check in on you given what a mess you had been last night. You surveyed the room, wondering where he had stayed last night since the two of you shared a room. His suitcase was still here and you only noticed that some of his stuff was missing. When he had shown up to get his things and leave, you had no idea; but you felt your stomach turn at the thought of you having possibly scared him off.

You were constantly doing and saying things that you shouldn’t with him. It’s not that you believed any of the things that you brought up; you just didn’t really know how to handle your own feelings when you saw other girls flirt with him. You were anything but secure when it came to this relationship and with yourself, and last night had proven that to everyone. You only hoped that he recognized the fact that you weren’t really upset with him, but that you just really couldn’t handle your alcohol.

You popped some more pain relievers and chased them with another bottle of water, already feeling the hangover that you would have to struggle with through today.

You forced yourself out of bed when you saw the time and trudged to the bathroom to attempt to get ready for the day. How these people could make it through convention weekends feeling like this was beyond you. All you wanted to do was go back to bed and cry.

Despite how terrible you felt, you knew you had to power through it. This was your job. You decided to not call or text Billy this morning; figuring it would be best to talk to him in person and apologize for how you acted. You felt a wave of dizziness as you stepped into the shower, which wasn’t helped by the thoughts running through your head.

‘Get it together, Y/N,’ you thought to yourself, ‘you can do this.’


You caught sight of Billy as he entered the green room not long after you had arrived and claimed a spot on a couch to rest. You felt your face heat up out of the humiliation from last night. Regardless, he noticed you and made his way right to where you were sitting.

“Coffee?” He asked as he handed you one of the cups he was holding. You took it from him, forcing a smile even though you were certain that he was not happy with you. He took a seat next to you, immediately moving in to give you a kiss on the lips. You returned the kiss, heart racing when you realized that maybe you hadn’t screwed up as badly as you thought you had.

“Feeling better?”

“I feel like crap,” you replied. “I am never drinking ever again. How do you guys do this every weekend?”

“You got a little crazy,” he laughed, “you drank way more than anyone else. I feel like a bad boyfriend. I should’ve cut you off early, but you were having so much fun.”

“I’m sorry. I know I was not very nice to you.”

“It’s okay. You were drunk and you got jealous. That girl was pretty persistent. Probably best you got mad at me instead of her.”

“I’m not a fighter,” you reminded him.

“You’re not a lot of things, but you surprised me last night.”

“I was that terrible?”

“No,” he chuckled, “you were really fun. I’ve never seen you so… happy around everyone before.”

“Ugh, they must all think that I’m an idiot.”

“Not at all,” he reassured you. “In fact, Briana demanded to know where you were when you left. She said that I needed to stop being a jerk because it was my fault you got upset.”

“It wasn’t your fault. I just got jealous and apparently I don’t hold back when I’m drinking.”

“I told that girl that I had a girlfriend. I pointed you out and everything.”

“You shouldn’t have had to do that at all. I was being stupid.”

“I’m so in love with you, I had no problem in letting anyone know that I was there with you. Even if you were sort of a hot mess.”

“You know I love you too, right?”

“I know,” he smiled as he kissed you again.

“You didn’t come back last night,” you pointed out sadly when he pulled away. You gave him your best puppy dog eyes, letting him know that your feelings were hurt.

“I stopped by and grabbed some stuff. You were passed out. I stayed in Stephen’s room, figured it would be best not to upset you anymore if I could avoid it.”

“I missed you.”

“I missed you too,” he replied. “Are we okay?”

“We’re okay. I’m so sorry.”

He smiled at you, pulling you in for another kiss. You let yourself melt into him as he did so. It felt as if the two of you hadn’t had a chance to kiss like this all weekend. In fact, you realized just how much you had missed him even though you were near each other the entire time.

Your make-out session was cut short, much to your dismay, by an overexcited Misha who had just bounded into the room. He stood in front of you and Billy, waiting patiently as the two of you pretended to ignore him for a moment before you decided it was best to stop kissing since he was just watching you.

“Can we help you?” Billy asked, somewhat annoyed that you had been interrupted.

“Okay,” Misha began, looking at Billy. “Don’t get mad at me, because I promise you, this isn’t what it looks like.”

“What are you talking about?” Billy narrowed his eyes at Misha.

“Y/N is a lot more famous than the rest of us, so apparently she has paparazzi following her a lot.”

“What do you mean?” You asked.

“I mean, there are pictures of you and I in what seems to be an… interesting situation.”

“What?” You straightened up, surprised by his words. As far as you knew, you hadn’t gotten too crazy last night. Aside from the jealous outburst, you remembered being cut off pretty quickly and promptly sent to the hotel before things could get worse.

Misha handed you this phone and you began to scroll through the photo set that he had pulled up, Billy glancing over your shoulder as you did so.

“No one ever takes candid pictures of any of us like this because no one cares enough,” he explained. “I have to say, this is the first time it’s been a big deal, and I’ve probably been in more interesting situations with other people.”

The photos weren’t anything to write home about. You didn’t remember details from that night; but it simply looked exactly how it actually went. You and Misha outside of the bar, him draping his jacket over you, you leaning against the wall to steady yourself and him helping you.

“What’s the big deal?”

“Uh, from the point of view of someone who wasn’t there, these look a lot worse than you think they do,” Billy said with a frown.

“They do?”

“Yeah, I mean… come on. He’s holding your face here, touching your arms like that, and… is he kissing you in this one?” Billy sounded a bit more frantic now and he stared hard at Misha. “Did you kiss my girlfriend?”

“It was a peck on the cheek,” he replied, “the same way I kiss any of my friends when they’re upset.”

“It was nothing Billy. I was emotional and I couldn’t even stand. He really did just walk me back to the hotel.”

“I don’t think it will be a big deal,” Misha said. “The fans know how close we all are. Very few people have gotten worked up over a picture of one of us even kissing each other on the lips.”

“The thing is, I’m fairly new to the fandom,” you replied. “I have an image in Hollywood in general. People will have a field day with this.”

“You’re saying you’re more famous than the rest of us?” Billy asked.

You raise a brow at him as if to test him to push the issue further. You literally had a big film career at one point in your life. You had awards and partnerships with big companies. Fame outside of this fandom was all that you knew. The only reason you were here to begin with was because your career had hit a low point. You had been told by your team that being a part of a long-running show could help put you back on track. Regardless of your low-point, people still managed to follow you around. Pictures like this, stories about you; none of that was new to you. It was only so concerning now because you were in a relationship. The media and fans would definitely use this to show that you were an awful person who cheated on her boyfriend.

“Okay, fair enough,” he said when he realized that you were in fact more famous than they were.

“I’ll divert the situation at my panel,” Misha offered when he saw how upset you were. “It might be best just to confront it right away. Billy? You’ll help, right?”

“Yeah, of course,” he replied. “It’s the first thing we’ll do.”

“I mean, we probably won’t be able to do it without making you sound like a lightweight,” Misha explained.

“Fine,” you groaned. You weren’t thrilled with the idea of everyone in the world knowing that you couldn’t handle your alcohol, but it was better than having them believe that anything else happened last night. “Just- please fix this.”


You decided to watch Misha’s panel from backstage; mostly to see exactly how he and Billy planned to alleviate the situation. You had to admit, to someone who wasn’t actually there, those pictures did look concerning.

You watched Misha go on stage as the band played his song, then turning your attention to a monitor to see what was going on onstage. The band wrapped up the song and Rich immediately went straight to harassing Misha about last night. You assumed it was pre-planned; giving Misha an opportunity to talk about it without bringing it up himself.

“I’m just really waiting for Billy to punch you in the face right now,” Rich joked.

You saw Billy laugh, still remaining quiet as he usually did.

“For the record, I know there were some pictures of Y/N and I from last night,” Misha said as he addressed the audience. “But it’s nothing to warrant a beating from Billy. I was very respectful and simply walked her home because she was ready to leave and no one else was.”

“Billy?” Rich said as he turned his attention back to him. “You don’t feel the need to hit this guy?”

Billy shook his head, laughing as the two men tried to fix the situation. Even though he wasn’t much for words, his happy demeanor and almost giddy laugh was enough to show anyone that he was not upset at all about the situation that looked a lot worse than it was.

“Even if he kissed her?” Rob added.

“I did not kiss her,” Misha insisted, “at least not on the lips. How does your wife feel about the fact that I’ve definitely kissed you before though?”

You covered your mouth to stifle a laugh; watching as Rob and the other guys bust out laughing. Rob was turning red with embarrassment over the fact that he even pointed it out.

“Okay, fair enough. You’re a nice guy who just helped friend.”

“Yes, and after seeing her this morning, I feel like I won’t have to be that guy ever again.”

“She’s definitely a lightweight,” Rob replied.

“She’s feeling pretty great today, right Billy?” Misha asked. He turned back to look at Billy, who was busy laughing at the entire thing. Billy nodded and answered with a quick ‘yup’ into the microphone.

The audience laughed along with them, applauding as Misha was introduced and the rest of the guys left him to his panel.

It had been fairly easy. Seeing Billy just laughing and agreeing with everything helped you to feel better about it, it would certainly help the fans look at it all as just a misunderstanding as well.


The rest of the weekend moved along somewhat quietly. You decided against joining everyone in anything else that involved alcohol. Not because you didn’t want to be around them, but because you were still nursing your hangover.

Billy returned to your hotel room, and the two of you returned to your normal selves. There was no arguing or fighting over the way you had acted. You didn’t bring up the girl at the bar again, and you certainly didn’t mention your jealousy anymore. The only thing that remained of that night was a nagging voice in the back of your mind that reminded you that you were going to screw this up with him. You also neglected to bring that up. Maybe if you ignored it, you could at least pretend that you weren’t internally freaking out over the idea that he might be getting fed up with you.

The entire incident was all but forgotten, that is until you received a call on Sunday. You were not expecting your publicist to call while you were busy on a convention weekend, but you hesitantly answered anyway.

“What?” You asked bluntly.

“We need to talk,” Jen replied seriously.

“I’m in the middle of a convention. Actually, I’m about to sit down to do autographs. I’ll call you when I get back to L.A.”

“It can’t wait until then.”

“What is so serious that it can’t wait one day?” You asked. You were annoyed now as you followed your handler to your autograph table.

“It has a lot to do with your partying, your… questionable behavior with your co-star this weekend, and your boyfriend that we agreed you’d downplay.”

You rolled your eyes, letting out a loud sigh. “I didn’t agree to anything. And, if you’ve paid attention to my work at all, you’d know the entire thing from the other night has been handled.”

“Okay, it still needs to be discussed.”

“Fine, not right now though. Look, I’ve really got to go.” You sat at your table, trying to rush the phone call as you saw your line of fans waiting.

“Okay, call me when you get back,” she said quickly. “Oh, and there’s something else…”

“You have two seconds, and I’m hanging up.”

“Your mother called. She says she can’t get a hold of you, so she called me.”

You swear you felt your heart stop as she said it. You swallowed hard, trying to understand what she was saying.

“My mother? Why?”

“She wants to see you.”

You felt yourself get dizzy now. You held back what you thought would be tears; the fear of her even contacting anyone in your team for something other than money was too much for you to comprehend right now.

“We’ll discuss this later,” you mumbled. You hung up, not even waiting for a response. You gave yourself a moment, still trying to wrap your mind around what had just happened. You couldn’t see her again. You didn’t want to and you were certain that she didn’t really want to see you either. She was most likely up to something, and you really didn’t want to find out what that was.

“You ready?” Your handler asked, breaking you from your thoughts.

You looked at her, still somewhat in a daze. You forced a smile, holding back the tears that you wanted to cry.

“Of course, I’m always ready.”

Chapter Text

Upon returning home, you avoided the inevitable for as long as you could. You had promised to call Jen, but quickly changed your mind about that. You pushed the phone call out of your mind, trying to forget what she had said and instead focused on being alone with Billy again.

He was busy during the week that you were home, only stopping by to spend the night here and there. The band was working on some songs and playing a couple of shows earlier that week, so you also made the effort by going to him on late nights when he was just too tired to drive to your side of town.

By Wednesday, your avoidance of your publicist ended when she called you again. You considered ignoring it, wanting to remain in the bliss of your time with Billy and not worry about the concerning topic she had started in on before. The whole bit about her thinking you should downplay your relationship was not a worry to you, even the pictures of you and Misha didn’t bother you anymore; now it was just the matter of your mother and what exactly it was that she wanted that would require her to want a visit with you.

“You said you’d call,” Jen said grumpily when you finally answered her call.

“You can imagine why I’ve been avoiding you.”

“Look, I only called because of the various photos that have popped up on social media. I thought we decided that it would be best not to draw too much attention to the fact that you’re seeing that guy. It also might have been a good idea to not make out with one of your married co-stars as well. Now, you’ve got the world aware of your relationship and the fact that you might be fooling around with someone else. Is this really how you want to be seen?”

“That guy is named Billy. And Misha and I did not make out. He was helping me and it just looked bad. We addressed it publicly, we’ve talked about it, it’s done.”

“Fine. The Misha thing doesn’t seem to be as big of a thing as it could have been. I’ve already released a statement to some publications.”

“Yes, I saw that. Thank you.”

“Yeah, I also just thought we decided that you’d bring it down a notch, this whole thing with that other guy. I get that you need to get this out of your system, but now you’ve got pictures of the two of you everywhere, there are pictures of you and Misha out there… you’re giving me a mess that I’m trying to clean up.”

“I’m pretty sure you decided all of that. I agreed to nothing.”

“You should probably just reconsider how open you choose to be with this, Y/N.”

“I’m fine. Please stop bugging me about this.”

“I’m just saying, you never stopped to consider that he might be using you.”

“That’s enough!,” You shouted. You felt yourself growing angry now, the constant discussion over who you chose to be with should not even be a topic. It was your life, it was your choice. “I am done having this conversation. I am an adult and I am choosing to be with him. You don’t get to tell me what I can and can’t do. Also, I get the feeling that this phone call is more about my relationship than it is about those pictures with Misha.”

“Well, it doesn’t hurt your career to be seen with someone like Misha. He may not be a huge star, but he’s known.”

“He’s married.”

“Unfortunately,” she trailed off. You shook your head in silent disgust over her persistence. Not only did she refuse to use Billy’s name when she talked about him, she was constantly trying to talk you into possibly leaving him for someone more favorable. “Although, if you’re really going to fight me on this one, maybe you can at least stay out of the public eye for a few weeks. Let the whole Misha thing clear completely and maybe avoid posting any more pictures of you and that guy for a while.”

“Billy,” you mumbled in frustration. “His name is Billy.”

“Whatever,” she replied, quickly brushing you off. “As I said the last time we talked, your mother called.”

“Yes, the main reason why I was avoiding this phone call,” you replied. “What does she want now?”

“She wants to see you.”

“Of course she does, you said that already. Why though? I haven’t seen her in years. Why now?”

“I honestly don’t know.”

“Will you just tell her that I’ll call her when I can?”

“You’re not going to call her,” Jen said bluntly. You smirked to yourself, realizing that she understood you a lot better than you thought she did.

“Just tell her that I will. I’m very busy. I go back to set this weekend and I’ve got another convention coming up. She’ll be easy to avoid.”

“Fine,” she huffed, “but I’m tired of playing the interceptor between you two.”

“Well, that’s what I pay you for. Send her some money, maybe she’ll forget how much she wants to see me.”

“I’ll keep in touch. Please, think about what I said about keeping quiet for a while. No more pictures.”

You hung up, noticing that you were getting really good at ignoring her requests. You quickly opened your photo gallery on your phone as you searched for a picture of you and Billy from last weekend. You found one of the two of you in a cute selfie that you had taken; you leaning against him as he kissed the top of your head. You quickly uploaded it to your Instagram, making sure to include a nice caption about how much you loved him. You made sure to link it to all your other social media accounts before you posted it. There wasn’t much you could do about how annoying Jen was being, but you felt that this was spiteful enough to get to her, which was all you really wanted to do. That, and it really was a cute picture.


Thursday evening was the first chance that you and Billy got to actually spend some time alone together. He wasn’t busy with band stuff, and you were busy taking Jen’s advice on staying at home rather than letting yourself be seen publicly. She was wrong about a lot of things, but maybe she was right about keeping to yourself until the entire Misha thing had been completely forgotten.

Just as Billy was about to start cooking dinner, something that you didn’t know he was capable of doing, your quiet evening in was interrupted by the doorbell ringing. You weren’t expecting anyone, and no one ever stopped by before; so you hesitantly made your way to the front door. You looked through the peephole, letting out a sigh as you pressed your forehead against the door in frustration. You really didn’t think she’d show up, especially since you thought that she didn’t know where you lived. Leave it to her to snake her way into your life again and show up unannounced in the middle of the night.

“Who is it?” Billy asked when he noticed it was someone that you were obviously not too thrilled to see. You ignored him, trying to decide if you should just pretend no one was there. You took a moment, telling yourself that it wasn’t worth it to ignore it tonight. You could ignore her all you wanted, she wouldn’t give up if she really was this set on seeing you.

“Mother,” you mumbled as you opened the door. “What are you doing here?”

“What, I can’t drop by to see my baby girl?” She pushed her way past you, not even bothering to wait for you to invite her in; probably because she knew you wouldn’t.

“You never do,” you replied as you closed the door behind her.

“Well, it has been a while. I figured I would visit since you never come to see me.”

“How did you even find me?”

“Your publicist.”

“Oh, of course.” You rolled your eyes. Making a mental note to reprimand Jen later. “What do you want?”

“I just wanted to see you,” she said sweetly. For someone who hated that fact that you were an actress, she certainly was really good at acting as if she cared about you. She turned her attention to Billy, who was standing there awkwardly as the two of you exchanged words. “Oh, and this must be Billy. I’ve seen pictures of you. Mostly from my daughter’s social media accounts, and yours. She never tells me anything.”

You visibly cringed, hating the fact that she knew who he was. You had done well in keeping her out of your life, the last thing you wanted was for her to show up and play her games with him as well.

“Uh, yeah. That’s me. And, don’t feel bad, I haven’t really heard much about you either.”

“So, you’re the one who is dating my daughter. It’s nice to put an actual person with a name and a face. Sorry, Y/N always has been ill-mannered. Can’t even introduce us properly.”

“Billy, my mom. Mom, Billy.”

Billy reached out and shook her hand. You glared at her, taking note at how she was acting so nice right now. You hated how manipulative she was, and you decided to do what you could to protect Billy at least.

“What do you want? Are you here for money? Don’t you usually go through my people for that?.” You made a point of calling her out now. Billy knew very little about her, you had spoken a bit about your childhood to him once. He didn’t understand the type of person that she was. You could tell by the way he was standing there, smiling at her; he was possibly thrilled at the idea of meeting your mother. Things like this were a big step in any relationship. You, however, wanted to keep her as far away from your relationship as possible; so you made a point of letting it be known that her presence here was not wanted.

“Why do I have to have a reason to pay a visit?”

“I haven’t seen you in… ten years?” You reminded her.

“Who’s fault is that?”

“You really want to go there?”

Billy cleared his throat suddenly. You glanced over to him, offering him a smile as if to let him know that you were okay.

“Billy, don’t let her appearance get in the way of our night.”

“Should- should I just go ahead and make dinner?” He asked.

“Yeah, I think that’s a good idea.”

“Just the two of us still? Or-” he stopped, glancing quickly between you and your mother, trying to figure out the correct protocol for the situation.

“Just the two of us,” you reassured him. “She won’t be staying long.”

“I didn’t raise you to be so rude,” your mother cut in. You stared at her, taking note of how unhappy she was, how sharp her words were even though she tried to remain kind in front of Billy. You had been rather brave in speaking to her like this. You figured that you were an adult now, she no longer had control over you. But, the way she was staring you down right now caused some familiar feelings to quell within you. Yes, you were brave when she was on the other side of the country. You were brave when you had seen her for the first time in ten years. Now, as she stared at you, you suddenly felt a lot less brave.

“You’re right,” you said softly. “I’m sorry. Do you mind if she joins us?” You turned back to Billy and he shrugged, still very confused.

“It’s fine, I’ll just cook extra.”


Billy, in his sweet and clueless manner, wasted no time in engaging your mother in conversation during dinner. You thought it was sweet that he was asking her about what you were like as a child, but you also knew his curiosity and honest interest in hearing about how wonderful you were and how loving your family had been would eventually be crushed. Your mom was not the type to sugar-coat anything; especially when it came to what a disappointment you were. She lived for the moments when she could go on and on to anyone who would listen about how horrible you were. She spoke briefly about you as a baby; telling cutesy stories, most of which you assumed she made up for Billy’s sake. You realized just then that you had limited memories of your childhood. All that stuck out in your mind was how controlling and cruel your mother had been all your life.

You grinned when she began to relay what you were like as you got older. You didn’t find any of it funny at all, but you were so uncomfortable that you didn’t know how to act right now. You worried that Billy would learn enough about how fucked up your life had been, how messed up it still was; he would surely run right out of there simply to avoid being associated with your crazy mother.

You sipped on your wine, staying silent as Billy and your mother spoke. He continued to press her for stories and information; while you continued to wonder if it was acceptable to drink yourself into a blackout.

“Y/N was smart,” she pointed out. “Top of her class. She had multiple offers to some really great colleges, we’re talking Ivy league. There were scholarships and awards… I thought she’d be a doctor or something. But, she threw all of that away to go chase some Hollywood dream.”

“We’re still talking about how smart I was in high school? Twenty-something years later and this is still what you’re caught up on?”

“I was proud at one point. No harm in reliving the moments when you didn’t disappoint me.”

“I’m not so disappointing when I’m sending you money,” you replied, a hint of snark in your voice. Normally, you wouldn’t talk to her like this, but maybe it was the fact that you had Billy there that made you able to do so. No way she would show too much of her real self in front of a stranger. She may have always been horrible to you, but she certainly kept up appearances in front of others.

“Well, I think she’s doing rather well with her dream.” Billy added.

“Acting is hardly a viable career option.”

“I don’t know. She’s done some great films, been on some big TV shows. I’ve seen her awards, I’m sure you’re proud.”

“The only pride I feel is looking back at how successful she was in high school, how smart she was until she got stupid. Acting isn’t a smart job, it’s what people do when they’re too stupid to get an education.”

“Well, success comes in many forms,” Billy replied. You glanced over at him, noticing that he looked upset. Whatever your mom was saying right now wasn’t sitting well with him.

“What do you do Billy?” She asked finally. You watched her as she took a long drink out of her glass, placing it down in front of her and giving Billy a snide look.

“I’m a musician. I play guitar in a couple of bands.”

She huffed, unimpressed even with him.

“I’m quite successful at it,” he continued.

“Billy is the greatest guitar player I’ve ever seen,” you added. “He’s so talented. His bands are amazing.”

“You would fall for a musician. You couldn’t go to school and get a real job, of course you couldn’t find a man with a stable career.”

“Please don’t be rude to him,” you pleaded. It was one thing for her to attack you, the last thing you wanted was for Billy to be involved.

“I feel like your entire purpose in life is to defy me.” She directed the comment to you as she stared at Billy for a moment before turning to you. You stared right back, almost as if you were challenging her. You averted your eyes rather quickly though, knowing that there was no point. She was blatantly pointing out that, not only were your career choices a disappointment to her, your romantic choices were as well. You could tell by her demeanor that she didn’t like Billy, and that didn’t sit well with you.

No matter how safe you felt around Billy; right now, you didn’t feel safe. You wanted to stand up for him, to scream it from the top of your lungs that he was a good man and that you loved him, but you couldn’t even stand up for yourself anymore.

“Can you excuse us?” Billy asked suddenly. He stood up from the table, reaching over to take your hand before hurrying you to the kitchen and away from your mother’s glare.

“Of course,” she called out after the two of you as you left.

Once he had you in the kitchen and he figured you were out of earshot, Billy started in on you.

“What is her deal?”

“I’m sorry,” you mumbled. “She’s being so rude to you and I don’t know what to do.”

“I’m not worried about me,” he replied, “I won’t sit back and let her keep talking to you like this.”

“Okay, I’ll get rid of her. Just, stay out of the line of fire for now. You’re making it worse.”

“I’m not meaning to-” he said, looking sort of thrown off by your words.

“No- no. It’s not you at all. She just- doesn’t understand. She doesn’t like you and it’s for her own selfish reasons. I can tell her that I love you a hundred times and she wouldn’t care. I’ll get her to go.”

“Okay, I’ll just- hang out in here and clean up.”

“Thank you,” you said. You leaned up to kiss him, running a hand over his beard.

“Hey, if you need me, I’m right here.”

You smiled at him as you headed back to the other room, bracing yourself; knowing that the real discussion would happen now. She had been rude in front of him, but the worst of her behavior always came when there was no one else around to witness just how horrible she was to you. She wasted no time in being candid now. As you started to sit back down, she started right in again.

“I’m here to tell you that this was a stupid move. You were doing quite well on your own, even better when you let your people set you up with someone who was actually famous. What? Now you decide it’s a good time to make yourself unavailable by dating just some regular guy that no one knows?”

“You mean, my team that paid some actor to date me? Yeah, that wasn’t humiliating at all.”

“I’m just saying, you wanted this. You wanted the spotlight, you wanted the fame. Now you’re just throwing it away? No one is interested in a middle age actress who is with some random guy. You’re irrelevant, and no one will care anymore. Not to mention what people are saying about you after those pictures with that other guy.”

“Is it just me, or do you sound an awful lot like my publicist?”

She grinned at you, giving you an amused look. She pursed her lips, giving you a smirk as you realized that maybe she had been a lot more involved in your life than you had though.

“Have you been talking to my publicist?” You asked, voice raising.

“Someone had to make sure your people are keeping you under control. That girl is doing a terrible job with it.”

“I told you to stay out of my life.”

“How could I? You’re my daughter. I love you and I only want good things for you. I’ve only been involved to make sure that she knows how to handle you.”

“You need to back off,” you replied. You felt yourself flinch at her use of the word ‘love’. You may be an idiot, but even you could tell the difference between love and what it was that she felt toward you.

“You need to fix your life. He is not what you need. Quit being a spoiled brat and get your shit together. You want to be famous? Fine. You will only be famous if you associate yourself with someone who is going to make you relevant again.”

“I’m content with what my life is right now. I don’t want to be set up again. I just want to be with Billy and I want to be left alone.”

“That’s not how it works anymore sweetie.”

“I’m not an idiot. I know what I want, and I know what I need.”

“Oh honey, you may be intelligent, but you always were an idiot.”

“Don’t talk to me like that. I’m not a child. You can’t come in here and control me anymore.”

“You’re being selfish. I never wanted you to pursue this life, but you did anyway. Now you’re ruining everything that you worked for. You never fail to disappoint me.”

You opened your mouth, wanting to speak again, but the words didn’t find you. You wanted to keep trying to stand up for yourself, but even after all this time; she never failed to make you feel terrible about yourself.

“I understand, you need to get it out of your system,” she continued. “It was bad enough that you were well into your late 30’s and single; but now you just seem like you’re settling. Just- do what you need to do with this guy, then maybe consider finding someone who could actually help keep your career afloat. What about one of those guys you’re on the show with? They’re pretty big stars, at least people would know them, which would keep people talking about you. Maybe the one that you were caught making out with.”

“Okay, first of all; they’re married. Misha and I were not making out. Everyone who is a part of this is married. Secondly, I’m not interested in anyone else like that. I love Billy. I know that he was unexpected and annoying at first; but I really do love him. I think he’s the one.”

“No, sweetie, he isn’t,” she said softly. “He’s just the only man to pay you any attention. Of course you’d jump at that. God knows you’re not anything that anyone of importance would even consider; it makes sense that he was able to convince you that he loves you.”

“He’s the only man to pay attention to me because he loves me too. Despite what everyone else thinks of me, despite what a mess I am; he loves me.”

“You’re not going to marry him, Y/N. He isn’t the type. He’s going to get what he wants from you- some attention, whatever else it is that you give to him… then he’ll leave. You’re getting too old to keep doing this. Let Jen set you up with someone. Settle down with someone who is good for you.”

You began to cry, frustrated that no one was listening to you anymore. All your life you had been pushed around by her, the people who worked for you, and by the world. You felt sure that your life was where you wanted it to be. Billy made you happy, something you hadn’t felt before.

“Stop it,” she said harshly. “You want to be treated like an adult, then act like one.”

You sniffled, wiping the tears away immediately. You knew better than to cry in front of her. She didn’t allow it, even when you were a child.

“You are such an idiot. You always have been. Maybe I should just step back and let you screw up your life and everything that you worked for. God knows you couldn’t go in the direction that you should have.”

“You don’t get to make decisions for me anymore.”

“You’re right, I don’t. But, as your mother, I’m just trying to warn you. That man is nothing but trouble. He’ll get what he wants from you and he’ll drop you just like everyone else does.”

“He loves me,” you mumbled. “For the first time in my life, someone loves me.”

“How can you think that anyone could really love you? I know you well enough to know that you’re unlovable.”

Her words stung. No matter how often you had heard it from her, they still hurt. It was her own cruel way of reminding you that she didn’t love you. She never came right out and said it, but she constantly reminded you that you were unlovable. Maybe you had spent years believing it, but as Billy came to your mind, you maybe didn’t think it were true anymore.

“I’m not, stop it.”

“Your reputation precedes you. Maybe he’s just unaware of what people really have to say about you.”

“Trust me, he knows what people think about me. He’s also the only one who knows that they’re wrong.”

“I’m tired of fighting with you. I didn’t bring up a daughter just to have her talk back to me and disappoint me her entire life. You’re the one who wanted me to be supportive of your career, your life; yet, I get involved and I’m the bad guy. How is that fair?”

“You’re right. Maybe you should go. I wouldn’t want to let you down any more.”

“I’ll keep in touch, god knows one of us needs to. Please consider what I had to tell you. I know your stubborn as hell and you think you can get by on your own; but you also know that you’re weak and you’re stupid. You let your people set you up with a man that they paid to date you, and you didn’t even realize it.” She smirked as she continued to berate you, reminding you of what an idiot you really were. “You thought he loved you. I just- I fail to see how this whole thing is any different.”

“Leave,” you demanded finally. You were feeling smaller than usual. Your head ached and your chest tightened as she spoke. Nothing had changed after ten years. She was still the same. You didn’t want to let her words get to you, but you couldn’t help it. When you spend your life with someone who is supposed to love you telling you that you are a failure, a disappointment, and an idiot; you start to believe it after a while.

It took years for you to be somewhat okay; to convince yourself that she was wrong about you and she was only trying to manipulate you for her own gain. You thought you had done well in all of that. But, having her show up again to behave the same exact way that she always did reminded you that you were really were stupid.

Despite the fact that you were intelligent, at least when it came to knowledge, you didn’t know the first thing about relationships or common sense. You knew that was her fault. It had been her own failures as a mother that made you who you were for so long. The only person who had been able to bring you out of that and make a small impact on how guarded and safe you tried to be had been Billy. You figured that you understood love because of him. But, maybe you were wrong about that. Your mother was right most of the time. You had failed to see the obvious when you had been humiliated during that entire fiasco with your ex, you let your guard down and honestly thought that you had felt something like love toward him. Maybe you were repeating history now.

You stood up without another word, heading toward the door. She followed silently. You opened the door, holding it for her as you waited for her to leave. You couldn’t even make eye contact with her anymore. Even as an adult, you reverted back to your childhood behavior of not being able to look at her when she talked down to you.

She moved toward the door, stopping in front of you briefly as she leaned in to hug you awkwardly and kiss your cheek. You felt yourself flinch again as your breath caught. Even worse than how uncomfortable you felt when she berated you was how awkward it felt when she pretended to show you affection.

She walked out quietly and you quickly shut the door behind her. You considered looking through the peephole, just to make sure that she had left, but even that idea made you uncomfortable.

“Are you okay?” Billy asked hesitantly from behind you. You stood at the door, heart still racing even after she was gone. You fought back tears. You had stayed strong for this long, you couldn’t appear to be anything else but strong.

“I’m fine,” you mumbled. “Why wouldn’t I be fine?”

“That was… rough. I- I didn’t realize that she was like that.”

“I know I said that we weren’t exactly close, but she’s still my mom. All moms are like this.”

“No- they’re really not,” he said softly.

“She’s just looking out for me. She’s always been tough on me because she just wants what’s best for me.”

“I heard all of that. Everything that she said. That wasn’t okay.”

“I’m sorry you had to hear her talk about you like that.”

“I don’t care what she said about me, she doesn’t know me, I’m fine. I’m worried about you.”

“If you think that’s the first time I’ve had that conversation with her, you’re wrong. I’m okay.”

“You don’t look like you’re okay.”

You rolled your eyes at him, still attempting to fight back the tears. If there was one thing you had learned to not do, it was to cry in front of anyone.

“I’m fine.”

“You look like you’re about to cry. You’re not fine.”

“I’m not going to cry. Crying isn’t allowed.” You bit your tongue, unsure as to why you even said that. It had been your mantra for as long as you could remember. Words that your mother had said again and again. You learned at a young age that emotions were nothing but trouble. Showing weakness was not an option, and crying was certainly the worst thing you could do. You never cried; not when you were sad, not when you were happy… being with Billy had tested your emotions more than anything else. You had definitely cried on a few occasions, all things that you had chastised yourself for later on. Right now, you felt a wave of emotions again as he seemed to be really worried about you. You loved him, and seeing him so upset over the way your mother talked to you and about him had you feeling things you hadn’t felt before. You wanted to protect him. But, at the same time, you wanted to run away from these feelings.

“Look, maybe you should go. I have a flight in the morning and I haven’t even packed. All of this was just really inconvenient.”

“You don’t want me to stay? It’s our last night together and I won’t see you for a week.”

“I know. But the guys asked you to join them tonight. You never hang out with them anymore. Besides, I’ll be busy anyway.” You walked toward him finally,  kissing him softly on the lips, lingering for just a moment to try to remember the way his lips felt.

“Oh, okay,” he said sadly, “well, I’ll see you in a week, right?”

“Of course. I wouldn’t dream of being anywhere else.”

Although you didn’t want your mother’s impromptu visit to affect you or your relationship with Billy, you couldn’t help it. You had worked hard to avoid her, knowing that she was toxic and would do anything she could to make you feel small. You thought you had gotten past allowing her to get in your head, but right now; you were questioning yourself, you were questioning your choices, and you were questioning Billy.

Chapter Text

You spent your week in Vancouver on set, keeping yourself distracted. You felt bad that you and Billy had parted on the note that you had; but after the unexpected visit from your mother, you were having a difficult time dealing with your own feelings. Billy had left that night, after you insisted that he spend time with his friends; and you spent the rest of the night packing and mulling things over.

You knew deep down that you didn’t have a reason to question Billy and his intentions, but your mother’s words wouldn’t leave you. She may be a horrible person, but she was usually right about most things. You knew you were unlovable, most people didn’t like you based on the way you carried yourself and guarded yourself. You usually made horrible choices and made a fool of yourself.

Perhaps she had always been right in the fact that the only thing you really had going for you in your life were your looks. You had a terrible personality and even you didn’t know why Billy put up with you.

The week went by slowly, and it gave you a chance to really reconsider things. You were being pressured by your publicist, and by extension, your own mother to maybe make a move to get your career back on track. It wasn’t completely crazy. Even after the trouble you had gotten yourself into when you were younger had blown over quickly when you had let your team take over and tell you exactly what to do to fix your image. Them setting you up with someone had inexplicably helped out. Yes, you may have been completely unaware at the time that the entire thing was just to help your image, and you may have started to really like the guy; but it had all ended rather quickly. It wasn’t until much later that you learned it was all a ruse. He hadn’t been interested at all and had backed out when the time was right.

All in all, the entire thing had you back on track. You had movie deals, TV appearances, and were more popular than ever. Within the last few years, things had slowed down; which you really didn’t mind at first. You were getting older and bored. You didn’t want to be the topic of the week anymore. Apparently, your mother and your team didn’t agree. Just because your mom never supported you in your career choice, that didn’t mean that she didn’t benefit from it. You knew now that she had to have been behind getting you to take a part on Supernatural. The show was slowly building you back up and making you a bit more relevant.

However, now when you put yourself in seemingly bad spots, you were right back to being a hot topic. You found that the entire misunderstanding with Misha hadn’t completely blown over just yet. Every time you logged into social media, you managed to come across something pertaining to that. It was bad because he was married, you were in a relationship, and the story hadn’t actually happened the way that people were still viewing it.

Mostly, you had spent the week avoiding Billy altogether. You didn’t answer his calls, but made sure to take a moment to text him that you were busy. Any conversation that the two of you had was done over text messaging. It wasn’t that you didn’t want to talk to him, it was more that you felt confused and wanted to take the time to think about what the people around you were saying. You had to really consider if he was the right choice for you, and you knew that hearing his voice would only make it difficult for you to think straight.

You considered doing him a service by breaking up with him. It really wasn’t fair for you to keep him tied in with the mess that you were. But, even you knew you couldn’t do that. Despite what anyone thought of the two of you, you knew you loved him. You knew you wanted him around and you knew that you couldn’t easily leave him. You had given more of yourself to him than to anyone else you had ever known in your life. He knew you better than you knew yourself most of the time.

By the time the next convention weekend rolled around, you still hadn’t exactly talked to him. You had been without him for a week and, although you had stayed busy with work, you had missed him terribly the entire time.

You pushed your mother’s constant nagging out of your mind as you made your way down the hotel corridor, looking for Billy’s room as you wanted to check to see if he was there already. When you found it, you knocked softly, now concerned that maybe you had made him angry with the way you had avoided him all week. You were generally a terrible person, but you really were a horrible girlfriend.

Billy answered, and you hadn’t really been expecting him to. His smile fell slightly when he opened the door and saw you standing there.

“Hey, what are you doing here?”

“You’re mad at me,” you said, knowing damn well that you had maybe pushed him a bit too far. You had to remind yourself that your coping tactics didn’t work for most normal people in relationships, but then again, you had never been in a relationship before. You still didn’t know what was appropriate and you didn’t fully understand the emotions of other people.

“No, I’m not mad,” he said softly as he leaned against the door frame. “I’m pretty bummed that you made me leave on our last night in L.A. together then went off to Vancouver and didn’t talk to me for a week. I’m even more bummed that I show up here to find out that you got a separate room. What’s going on?”

“I just- I just needed some space,” you admitted. It wasn’t the entire truth, but usually when your mother wormed her way into your life at any given moment, you shut down completely. This was just the first time that you had to deal with her while there was someone more important in your life.

“Why? Did I do something.”

“Not at all.”

“You’re regretting this. You regret that you slept with me. You regret that we started this-”

“No, please don’t,” you demanded. You held a hand up to him, indicating that he needed to stop. “I understand that it seemed bad, but it’s not. I really just needed to be alone for a while.”

“I’m just really confused. One minute you’re demanding my attention, jealous when other girls talk to me; then your mother visits and suddenly you’re putting as much distance between us as you can. Is that it? Does it have something to do with her?”

“Nothing is wrong. Really, I was just busy and you know I’ve never done the whole relationship thing before. I needed space and I guess I just didn’t know how to tell you that.”

“You just talk to me, Y/N,” he said softly.

“I know, and I will from now on,” you replied as you made your way into his room. He stepped back, allowing you to enter. “I still really just need to keep my own room this weekend; so I can be alone if I feel that I need to be.”

“You don’t need to be alone right now?”

“I haven’t seen you in a week,” you smirked. You grabbed a hold of his shirt, pulling him down toward you. “I don’t need to be alone.”

He kissed you just then; hard and passionately. He ran his hand through your hair, giving it a soft tug as you moaned against his mouth. He kissed you as if he had never kissed you before, as if he were afraid to lose you.

“I love you,” you whispered when you broke away from the kiss. You hurriedly began to remove his shirt, desperate to feel his skin against yours. He met you at your sentiment; and before you knew it, the two of you were removing each other’s clothing. He kissed you again, lifting you so that he could carry you to the bed where he laid you down and climbed on top of you.

“Please tell me you love me,” you said as he began to kiss your neck. He stopped suddenly, leaning back to look at you.

“Of course I love you,” he replied. “Don’t ever think that I don’t.”

“I missed you,” you smiled.

“You have no idea how badly I missed you,” he replied as he moved in for another kiss. You could feel him press against you and you moaned into his kiss. You arched your back, craving contact with him. He pulled back from the kiss, smiling as he continued to tease you.

“Show me,” you whispered.


After what you counted as make-up sex, you and Billy laid next to each other; lazily touching and kissing. It felt as if it had been a long time since you had seen each other, and you suppose it had been.

You had asked him to leave the night of your mother’s impromptu visit, probably putting it in his mind that he had done something wrong and he possibly spent the week wondering if the two of you were done. That was never your intention, and you made a mental note to not make him feel as if you were shutting him out completely when you had your moments like that.

“Are you really okay?” Billy asked after a while. “You really seemed shook after you kicked her out that night. I was worried.”

“I’m okay. I’ve been dealing with her my entire life. I get over it pretty quickly.”

“So, what she said about you… what, were you some kind of genius or something?” He gave you a questioning look, as if he really wanted to know. You knew that most people thought that you were just some airheaded, stuck up girl who knew nothing about anything. Maybe your common sense wasn’t always the sharpest, but you were anything but stupid.

“Or something,” you chuckled, not really wanting to give yourself away too much.

“Come on, I’m really curious now.”

“I was valedictorian,” you stated after a moment. You decided it was okay for Billy to know everything about you, just like you wanted to know everything about him. “I was on student council, scored very high on my SAT’s, and was accepted into multiple schools. Very good schools that I turned down in the end. None of that matters though. Not now anyway.”

“Wow, I’m dating a closet genius,” he replied with a grin.

“I actually worked really hard in school. I didn’t have a social life or any hobbies because my GPA was more important than anything to her. I was smart because she wanted me to be. All I ever wanted to do was impress her. I thought I could win her love if I just did what she wanted.”

“You did the exact opposite of what she wanted,” he pointed out.

“I realized none of that mattered. I could be the smartest person in the room, the prettiest, the most perfect daughter; and none of it really mattered. There would always be a way for me to disappoint her. When I got old enough to think for myself, I just stopped trying to be what I thought I needed to be.”

He hummed in response, nuzzling against your neck as he kissed your skin there.

“You know,” he began, “I think you’re smart, and beautiful, and perfect just how you are.”

You laughed at his comment, knowing damn well that you were far from perfect. “I think I’ve got a lot of things that I could work on.”

“You know- I’m not using you either.”

You looked at him, sort of surprised by his off-topic comment. You hadn’t realized that he had heard all of the conversation with your mother.

“I think I heard a lot more of that conversation than I was meant to,” he said as you stared at him in confusion. “That’s kind of why I freaked out when you backed off. I know she said I was just using you because you’re famous or whatever, but it’s not like that.”

“I know it’s not. Sometimes I still let her get to me, and I shouldn’t have shut you out like that just because of what she said. I know you better than that.”

He leaned against you, resting his chin against your chest and you giggled at the way his beard tickled your skin. You really did adore him. You loved him enough to put up with the damn beard and he loved you enough to put up with your craziness.

“So, did you really never have any fun when you were a kid?” He asked.

“Never. It wasn’t allowed,” you replied with a laugh. In hindsight, the way you grew up really wasn’t funny. It was just easier to laugh about it so that you didn’t allow it to consume your life anymore.

“At least you were able to do what you wanted when you moved out.”

You let out a bigger laugh. “Oh, yeah. I think the most fun I ever had was drinking while I was underage. It’s not fun when you get into trouble though and it causes a world of problems for your image.”

He looked up at you, squinting as if he were questioning whether you were lying to him or not.

“Come on, what’s the most exciting thing you’ve ever done? You can tell me.”

“You,” you replied with a sly grin.

He smiled, shaking his head at your answer. “Seriously.”

“Look, you knew what you were getting into when you got with me. I’m the least fun person here and my life is anything but exciting.”

He studied you for a long time. You averted your eyes from his gaze, feeling a bit uncomfortable at the idea that he might be judging you. When he had had enough of staring at you, he leaned in for another kiss before pulling himself away from you. He got out of bed, moving around the room to collect his scattered clothing.

“I’m going to dinner in a bit with the guys,” he said, changing the subject. You didn’t mind at all that the conversation had shifted away from how lame you were. “You’re welcome to join us if you’d like.”

“If it’s okay,” you replied. “I mean, if they don’t mind.”

“It’s fine. They always ask if they’ll ever get the chance to hang out with you now that you’re cool.”

“Oh, now I’m cool because I’m sleeping with their friend?”

“Yeah, who’s using who here?” He asked with a raised brow. You sarcastically rolled your eyes at him before throwing a pillow in his direction.

You knew that you had a habit of making things a lot more complex than they needed to be. Even after this discussion, you understood that brains were not the same as smarts. You could be the brightest person in the room, but you still managed to let the intricacies of relationships get the better of you. You always had been stupid when it came to understanding other people and how and why feelings came into play.  It didn’t matter if those relationships were romantic, friendly, or familial. You had failed miserably in your family relationships, even if it hadn’t been entirely your fault. Friendship was something you never did understand completely, but perhaps you could work on that with these people that were your co-workers. And, romantic relationships had been a concept that you never thought you’d even have to comprehend.

You still felt that you were lacking when it came to that part of your new life, and you appreciated that Billy was at least patient enough to allow you the time to figure it out. Even better than that, you were allowed to figure it out with him.

Chapter Text

“You know, you should fire your publicist,” Billy said suddenly. You looked up at him from your spot in front of the mirror where you were applying your makeup. He was busy digging through his his bag, looking for something to wear for dinner tonight. Although you had gone out of your way to make sure you had a separate room this weekend, he had managed to gradually relocate his belongings to your room and the two of you were practically living together again.

“Excuse me?” You asked as you turned your body to face him.

You saw him shrug as he retrieved a button up from his bag and he slipped it on over his t-shirt. “You just seemed really pissed off at the way she interferes with everything. There’s also the fact that she’s obviously taking direction from your mom when she tells you what to do with your life.”

“I haven’t listened to my publicist when she tells me what to do in years. Aside from that, she’s pretty good at her job. The entire Misha thing is basically over with and forgotten.”

“I don’t doubt that she doesn’t know what she’s doing. I just- I see how much she gets to you and maybe I sort of hate the way she tells you to dump me.”

“I’m not dumping you,” you smiled. “She can tell me all she wants, there are just some things I won’t do.”

“Wouldn’t it be easier to keep your mom out of your life if you didn’t have her goons working for you?”

“What makes you think I want my mom out of my life?”

“Uh,” Billy narrowed his eyes at you as he sat at the edge of the bed. “I’m pretty sure you’ve told me that you didn’t want her involved.”

You let out a sigh, turning back to focus on your makeup. “Billy, my career is what it is because of the people that I’ve had around me. Things are picking up; I’ve been getting offers and interviews. Things are better now than they have been in a while. Even I’m smart enough to know that it’s probably because my mother has been involved in decisions even when I didn’t realize she had been for so long.”

“I’m just saying, whatever good things are going on is because of you. You don’t need a team to do all of that for you.”

“You wouldn’t understand,” you chuckled. “You get to just show up, get out there on stage and play guitar with your band. You have a built-in fan base and everyone loves you. You don’t even have to work for it. I do. I have to work hard to make people like me. I can’t do that on my own.”

“Okay, well, maybe I do have to work a little bit…” Billy replied. He looked uncomfortable and slightly flustered at the way you chose to word that.

“I didn’t mean it like that,” you corrected yourself. “I just mean that you’re approachable and talented. People love you, they just do. You don’t need people in your life to clean up your mistakes.”

“I’m not saying that you don’t need some people on your team, especially with how famous you are. Managers, publicists… all of that is important. I am saying that you could clean house. Start fresh with people who will actually work for you and not interfere with your personal life and take cues from your mother.”

“You know,” you replied as you turned to face him again. Now, you were irritated. Billy wasn’t normally the type to get involved in your career choices. The fact that he was sitting here, telling you how you should run things when he had no idea as to what any of that really meant; it got to you. “If there’s one thing that I hate more than my mom and my publicist telling me what to do; it’s having people in my personal life tell me what to do.”

“I’m not telling you what to do, I’m just suggesting-”

“Yes you are!” You shouted. You tossed your eyeliner onto the table in frustration. “Everyone does! I’m so tired of people treating me like I’m a child, as if I don’t know what I’m doing. I’m so tired of being told what to do.”

“I’m sorry,” he mumbled. “You’ve just been so upset this week and I thought it was because of those two interfering in your life.”

“And now I have you interfering.”

“I’m not trying to. I just thought that, as your boyfriend, I could offer some advice.”

“It’s unwanted,” you stated sharply. You stood up and grabbed your bag, fumbling as you mindlessly as you made a move toward the door. You were flustered and upset again, pissed off that now you had someone else in your life who thought that they knew what was best for you. You stopped short of the door, taking a deep breath as you tried to cool down. “I’m not leaving, this is my room. You leave.”

“You want me to leave?” He asked, sounding a bit surprised.

“Yes, I do.”

He let out a frustrated sigh and you knew right away that you were overreacting. You considered backtracking and admitting that you didn’t mean it. You didn’t want to kick him out and you certainly didn’t want to keep doing everything that you could to drive him away. Your need for control over your own life won in the end. It was bad enough that you had these people who had been in your life from the beginning of your career bossing you around, you really didn’t need it from him.

“Y/N,” he began as he headed for the door. “There’s got to come a time when you and I can have discussions that don’t end in you kicking me out or ignoring me. Maybe someday we’ll be able to talk like a normal couple.”

You didn’t respond out loud. In your mind though, all you could tell yourself is that you were far from normal. You also didn’t know how to be in a relationship still. He hesitated for a moment, and when you didn’t reply, he walked out of the room without another word.


You half-expected him to avoid you the rest of the night; and you certainly didn’t expect for him to text you when it was time to go out for dinner. You had been looking forward to spending time with him and the rest of the guys, but you really figured you had fucked that up with the way you blew up at him.

Fortunately, Billy always had been the forgiving type. He put up with a lot when it came to you, so it was no surprise that he was willing to forget the argument that you had just had and stick to his word about you having dinner with the guys.

You responded to his text; which he had obviously carefully typed so as not to upset you any more, and let him know that there were no hard feelings and you still wanted to spend time with them.

In true Billy fashion, he picked you up from your room; not even mentioning the way you had acted earlier. Usually, he had no problem with calling you out on your brattiness, but you knew that you were right about this whole thing. You were also happy with the way he seemed to accept defeat on the topic. Hopefully, you wouldn’t have to deal with him interfering with your life like that anymore.

You had never really hung out with the other guys in the band before. You were still getting used to the fact that the people that you worked with on the convention circuit were only now becoming friends with you, and you were allowing them to get to know you only because of Billy.

“You like sushi?” Stephen asked as you walked along with him, Rob, Billy, and Mike.

“I’ve never tried it,” you admitted.

“Wow, you really are sheltered.” He gave you a big smile as the four of you rounded the corner and found the restaurant shorty after.

Once you were all seated, you sat quietly as you let them order for you. You didn’t know the first thing about eating food like this, but you trusted Billy enough to order something that you might like.

You sat back, sipping on your drink as the guys chatted among themselves for a minute.

“It’s good that you’re not ignoring him anymore,” Rob said as he nodded towards Billy.

“What do you mean?”

“He doesn’t mean anything,” Billy cut in. He cleared his throat, eyeing Rob as if to tell him to shut up.

“Did you tell them that I was ignoring you?”

“Well, you kinda were,” he replied.

“Yeah, but I didn’t realize that you’d tell your friends about it.”

“I’ve known them for years. Of course I talk to them when things bug me.”

“Oh, what else do you tell them about me?”

“Nothing,” he responded. “Look, they just noticed that I was bummed when you weren’t talking to me and when they asked, I told them. It’s no big deal.”

“Yeah, it’s no big deal,” Mike stated. He looked at you, concerned that maybe you were getting upset with Billy again. You didn’t know much about these guys yet, but you did understand that Mike was the one to always try to ease any tension between people. “We don’t talk about your relationship.”

“Yeah,” Rob added. “Like he said, we just noticed he was bummed is all.”

“I was just going through some things,” you said. “I tend to shut people out when I get too stressed.”

“What happened?” Rob seemed to be interested in what it was that had caused a bit of a rift in your relationship with Billy. You eyed him suspiciously; knowing deep down that he wasn’t prying just for the sake of it, but still feeling as if you couldn’t trust anyone. After mulling it over in your mind for a moment, you decided that you had done well in letting people in so far, maybe it wasn’t such a bad idea to keep trying to make friends with these people.

“My mom showed up unannounced,” you began. “Long story short; we don’t exactly talk or get along. She just said some things that upset me and I shut down.”

“You met her mom?” Stephen asked, looking at Billy.

“Yeah,” Billy said. “She was a real treat.”

“Between her and my publicist telling me to dump Billy, I sort of couldn’t take it anymore.”

“It doesn’t help when they’re working together,” Billy added.

The three men gave you interested looks, waiting to hear more. You reluctantly told them the basic gist of the entire situation, gradually becoming more open about it when you realized they were letting you vent without cutting in. It was therapeutic really to actually talk about your frustrations out loud to people who would listen. When you were done recounting that night, you took a deep breath and waited for them to respond. Billy had taken a hold of your hand as you spoke and was still holding it when you finished.

“So, you have your mother basically working for you?” Rob asked. He gave you a concerned look.

“Apparently she and my publicist keep in touch when it comes to me.”

“Well, maybe I don’t know a lot, but I do know that it’s never a good idea to let family be too involved in your career. From what you’ve told us, none of this is going in your favor.”

“Well, the people who work for me have done just fine by me all these years.” Even you were surprised by how much it sounded as if you were defending them and their actions.

“Well, that’s debatable,” Billy said with a chuckle.

You noticed the way Rob questioned you with a look.

“If you think the whole thing with her mother was bad, you don’t want to hear about all the other crap they’ve pulled,’ Billy continued.

“Which is something we won’t discuss,” you said flatly, warning him with a cold stare. It was one thing for you to vent about them, but you still felt that it wasn’t okay for him to say anything.

“I know you didn’t ask for it,” Rob began. “But, I’m going to offer you some advice. Don’t allow the people who work for you to make personal decisions for you. In fact, you should always be the one to make a final decision about everything. Most importantly, never allow family to be involved in your career like that. You let this thing continue in the way, and you will regret it.”

You let his words sink in. For the first time ever, you really appreciated the man. The two of you never really did get along, but he seemed to be willing to try now that you were with Billy. His words stayed with you as the conversation shifted to something a little more light. Throughout the rest of dinner, you let the advice play out in your mind, wondering if you would ever really have the guts to listen to it.


The following morning.

The last thing that you expected from the weekend was a phone call from your mother. You were sitting in your hotel room, mindlessly watching TV when her name popped up on your screen. You felt your heart stop for a moment, the same way it always did when you had to be in contact with her. Even as an adult, she never failed to induce feelings of panic from you. It was strange really; the way you had gone from not even speaking to her for years to only recently finding out that she had always been there, interfering with your life secretly. Now, it was almost as if she felt it was okay to continue to keep contact just because she had shown up out of the blue one day. You seriously considered ignoring her call, but you also knew that she wasn’t going to give up. It was better in the long run to speak to her over the phone rather than to risk having her make an appearance to get to you.

“What do you want?” You asked as you answered. Again, you only felt safe talking to her this way because she wasn’t physically there.

“That’s no way to greet your mother,” she replied.

“I’m sorry,” you mumbled. You immediately regretted saying it, your anxiety rising at how upset she sounded. “To what do I owe the pleasure?”

“I’m just calling to check in on you. Jen tells me that you are still seeing that man…”

“Billy,” you said, cutting her off. “Please don’t tell me that you’re calling me to try to talk me into dumping him again. It’s not going to happen.”

“I understand that you’re stubborn,” she replied. You could almost see her sly smirk over the phone, you could always tell by the sound in her voice that she was up to something.”But, Jen was too afraid to come to you with this, so I knew I had to.”

“What are you talking about?” You sighed heavily, already irritated.

“I don’t want you to get hurt.”

You chuckled to yourself, slightly amused that she was trying to sound so sincere. You waited patiently for her to continue.

“We were just worried that he’s using you,” she said quietly. “Now, it turns out that he might be cheating on you.”

You audibly groaned; closing your eyes tightly to fend off the headache that she was about to give you.

“Please, stop-” you whispered.

“Do you know what he’s doing when you’re not around?”

“What the hell are you talking about?” You spat. “This is ridiculous. I am so tired of the two of you trying to come between us.”

“Y/N, Jen keeps an eye on him through social media,” she began. “He’s been working with that girl that you work with. The blonde one…”

“Briana, yes,” you replied. “He’s helping with the music for her album.”

“He’s been spending time with her while you were in Vancouver.”

“You know, I’m most concerned about the fact that you know more about my life that I do.” You were half-joking, but mostly pissed off that she knew so much.

“They’re very close,” she pointed out.

“Yeah, well, they’ve known each other for a long time. They’re friends.”

“I think we both understand that men and women can’t just be friends.”

“Okay, I’m done listening.” You stood up from the bed and began to pace the room. There it was again; the panic, the pain in your chest, the tears welling up in your eyes as you sat there and listened to your own mother tell you that your boyfriend was cheating on you. She didn’t have to say it directly, but her wisely chosen words had gotten to you. You didn’t believe her obviously. But now that she had brought it up, you were definitely thinking about it. Billy had been working with Briana while you were in Vancouver and busy ignoring him. Of course it made sense that if something happened, it would have happened then. You pushed the thoughts from your mind, knowing that you couldn’t let her get to you again. You trusted Billy. You knew you couldn’t trust your mother.

“Just- just think about it, Y/N. Go look through their accounts and see. I know you avoid social media, but maybe it would save you some pain if you weren’t so blind to everything.”

“Okay, goodbye,” you breathed out.

“I’ll check in on you at another time, sweetheart.” You cringed as she said it. The fake sweetness in her voice making you feel nauseous. You hung up before she had a chance to add anything else.


Later that day, you were busy at the convention. It had been tough trying to get through panels and photo ops while the events of yesterday and today we’re still battling in your head. Mostly, you wanted to talk to Billy, knowing that he would be the only one to calm you enough to make a rational decision.

It wasn’t until the day was nearly done when you were actually able to catch him and lead him away to a quiet green room that no one else occupied.

Once the door was shut securely behind you, he moved in to kiss you, letting his hands roam as you tried to keep your cool. Being with him like this always felt nice, but you had too much on your mind to even consider fooling around right now.

“She called,” you said dryly. Billy studied you from behind his glasses for a moment before he realized what you had meant.

“Are you okay?” He removed his hands from beneath your shirt and let them rest against your hips, understanding now that you pulling him aside for a few minutes was not about getting frisky this time. You rested your face against his chest, finally feeling a sense of calm wash over you.

“She tried to convince me that you were cheating on me.”

“What?” He asked, sounding annoyed already.

“She went on and on about how you were working with Briana and how you both looked so damn cozy together on social media.”

“I’m not,” he replied. “You know we’re just friends.”

“I know,” you said softly as you pressed your face harder against him. “Knowing that you wouldn’t cheat on me didn’t stop me from looking through pictures from that week though.”

“I’m sorry if I did something wrong.”

“You didn’t. I realized really quickly that I was being paranoid because of her. She gets in my head, and I let her.”

“I’m so sorry.”

“Which is why I’ve come to a decision,” you said as you pulled back from him. He looked down at you curiously, still holding onto you as you spoke. “Rob was right; I can’t keep letting my mother be involved like this. That also means that I can’t have Jen involved anymore.”

Billy cocked his head at you, squinting slightly as a confused look came over him. You couldn’t be sure, but he seemed almost put off by what you were saying.

“You’re gonna fire your publicist?” He asked. “And you’re going to cut ties with your mom again…? Because Rob said it was a good idea?”

You nodded, giving him a look as you were equally confused by his sudden change in behavior. He let go of you then, taking a step back from you as he stared off.

“What?” You asked. “Why do you look so surprised? Isn’t this something that I should do?”

“Well, yeah… I know it’s a great idea… I’m just a little confused as to why it’s only a good idea because Rob suggested it.”

“Does it matter who suggested it?” You felt yourself start to grow irritated by his behavior.

“No, it doesn’t matter. I guess I’m just a little hurt that you listened to him instead of me.”

“No offense,” you began, “but are you really in a position to tell me what’s good for my career?”

“I don’t know. I just- I care about you, and I just want you to be happy.”

“I appreciate that, I really do. But, I mean, you’re just a musician. You play guitar is all. You’re not really someone I’d go to for advice about my career.”

“So, Rob offers you the same advice that I did; and you actually listen to him. But, when I said it, you lost your mind and told me to leave.”

“Well, I mean, he’s in the same line of work that I am. He actually gets it.”

“He literally gave you the same advice that I did!” He shouted suddenly. The change in his tone made you jump and you started to feel antsy at how upset he had become over this.

“I’m sorry. You’re right,” you admitted. “Maybe I should’ve listened to you. But, it was just different to hear it from him.”

“What is that supposed to mean?”

“Come on, he’s a lot like me. He actually has things going for him. I guess it just meant more to have him say it instead of you.”

His expression fell suddenly. You instantly regretted what you had said, even though you weren’t sure why it had upset him so much. You also knew it was too late to take it back. He turned from you, avoiding your gaze before he finally stood up from the couch. You felt your breath catch when you saw him head for the door.

“Where are you going?” You asked, your voice catching as you internally panicked.

He didn’t even look at you. Instead, he spoke with his back to you. “I’m leaving.”

“You don’t have to.”

“I know I don’t have to. I’m choosing to.”

“Billy, please-”

“What? You only have people walk out when you tell them to? Not used to someone leaving just because you’re being a jerk?”

“Come on,” you said, laughing slightly and hoping that he would as well. “You don’t have to be this way.”

“I’m done,” he said flatly. Still, he never once turned to face you. You only saw his shoulders tense as he hung his head in defeat.

“Done with what?”

“You,” he replied. “I can’t do this anymore.”

“What are you talking about? What did I do?”

“I just realized that you don’t respect me and what I do, and you certainly don’t respect this relationship.”

You rolled your eyes at him, annoyed with how childish he was being over the entire thing.

“Quit being stupid,” you muttered.

“See, that’s part of the problem. You think everyone is below you and I’m sick of it.”

“I do not think that,” you said angrily, trying to defend yourself.

“Are you sure?” He replied, still not looking at you. “Because the way you speak to me makes me think otherwise.”

Before you could even respond, he was out the door; this time, letting it slam closed behind him. You felt your heart sink now that he was gone. For the first time ever, you realized immediately that you really had fucked up; you just didn’t know what you had done.

Chapter Text

You spent the remainder of the day in a sort of daze. You understood what had happened, but you were having a difficult time accepting it.

It had been a stupid argument. The arguments between you and Billy always were. Only this time, you were now left with the replay in your mind of him walking out on you and telling you that he was done with you. It had to be a bad dream.

You were sitting in the greenroom, trying to focus of your schedule and the fact that the weekend was far from over. You were more concerned about what was currently going on in your personal life though. No matter how much you told yourself that it had to have been a misunderstanding, you knew deep down that he had broken up with you.

You had never felt this way before; not even after you had learned that a man you had dated previously had actually been paid to date you. No, this one was an entirely new set of emotions that you didn’t know how to deal with.

You were lost in thought, blind to anything that was going on around you currently. Your mind raced with questions that you desperately tried to answer for yourself, but even you knew that you didn’t know how to figure this one out.

“Hey, are you and Billy okay?” You heard a voice suddenly, one that broke you from your thoughts. You glanced around once you had been brought back by the question; taking a moment to make sense of the fact that it was Kim who was standing in front if you currently.

“What? Why?” You asked in return. You had been broken from your thoughts so suddenly, and now you weren’t so sure how to answer her of if you had even heard her correctly.

“Uh, maybe because he just seemed to be in shitty mood when he showed up a little bit ago. He’s usually not like that, especially not the entire time he’s been seeing you.”

She moved to sit next to you just then, and you felt yourself grow irritated by the fact that she was even asking. Maybe you didn’t know a lot about relationships, but you were sure that it was none of her business what happened between you and Billy.

“Oh, not that it’s your business, but we had a little argument this morning. I didn’t realize that he was still pouting about it.”

“You two been fighting a lot lately?”

“We’re not fighting,” you corrected her.

“I didn’t mean- I just, I just wanted to make sure you two were doing okay.”

You shrugged at her, trying to brush off the fact that maybe you weren’t okay. You and Billy had engaged in a few disagreements recently, but you didn’t want to admit that they were your fault. You didn’t want to admit that it was your fault that he had left you.

“You know he’s in love with you, right?” Kim added.

You darted your eyes up to look at her, hurt that she would even say that to your face. It was almost as if she were trying to convince you. You assumed that she wasn’t blind to your demeanor right now and the fact that you had been genuinely questioning whether he actually had loved you at any point.

“Are you sure about that?” You asked.

“Yeah, I’m sure,” she said, giving you a look of confusion. “Come on, you know he loves you.”

“Well, he has a strange way of showing it,” you mumbled.

“What happened?”

“I think he broke up with me,” you replied, trying to keep your cool even though the thought of it was killing you. You let out sigh after you said it, disappointed in yourself for even trying to consider denying the truth. “No, I know he did.”

Kim grinned, rolling her eyes, “That’s funny. You’re funny.”

It only took a moment for her to recognize the seriousness in your expression.

“He did not,” she said, almost as if she were trying to convince herself at this point.

“Well, when a man tells you that he is done with you, I assume breaking up is what he means.”

“What?” She said in disbelief. “How? What happened?”

“It doesn’t matter,” you replied. “It’s over. I always knew it wouldn’t last.”

You felt yourself zone out of the conversation. You didn’t like this feeling; the one of moving almost slow motion through the day, as if nothing around you were real. It didn’t help that you had a constant knot in your throat, which you knew was only present because you were forcing yourself not to cry. The entire thing was almost unbelievable to you, until you stopped to remind yourself that it was actually completely feasible. You always knew that being with Billy was unexpected; not just to you, but to everyone around you.

“Y/N, are you okay?”

You put on your best fake smile as you forced back tears. In truth, you didn’t know what to do with all of these emotions that seemed to be building up right now. All you knew was that withholding strong emotions was the only thing that had gotten you through your life up to this point.

It had always been your mother’s belief that you don’t show weakness, that’s how people take advantage of you. It took a few years for her to be able to get that through your thick skull, but when she finally did; you had become the most emotionless and uncaring person you had ever known. The idea of it helped you out immensely though. You had gone a long time showing people that you didn’t care, and it had kept you fairly safe up until this point. Mostly, it had all helped you when it came to dealing with your mother.

You sort of kicked yourself over it now. You had been an idiot to let those walls that you had built up fall for one person. You didn’t know why you had let Billy in the way that you had, but you did know that he had been the only person who really understood you. You allowed him to know you in ways that no one else ever did or ever would. That was what hurt the most right now. You hated yourself for the fact that maybe your mother had been right all along. You hated that you ever had to admit that she was right.

‘How can you think that anyone could really love you? I know you well enough to know that you’re unlovable.”‘ Her words echoed in your head just as they had been since the argument with Billy. She had called it some time ago; in fact, she had been saying it most your life. Right now, you wanted to disappear and hide in a hole to escape the embarrassment that you were feeling over the fact that she was right. No matter how often she pushed, and how hard you pushed back; she would always be right. You were stupid to think that Billy ever loved you, because you were unlovable. You had been primed for that outcome all your life. You had also been reminded your entire life that you didn’t even deserve love in the first place. If you weren’t deserving of the love of your own mother, why would you deserve any other form of love from anyone else?

‘Crying isn’t allowed. Don’t let them know how weak you are.’  You repeated the mantra in your mind, knowing that it was more important now than ever.

“I’m fine,” you replied. “Billy and I were never going to work out, everyone knew it.”

“Y/N,” Kim began. “I don’t think any of us ever said that.”

She reached over to place a hand on yours, a movement that caught you off guard. Yes, you felt as if you had developed some sort of friendly relationship with her over time, but you didn’t expect this. Even after the way she had helped you out on your first real date with Billy, and the way you had been able to turn to her when you were at a complete loss of what to do when you had finally decided to be with him; it never did completely feel as if you were ever close to her. That was your own fault really. It was not in your abilities to trust people and form relationships with them. Relationships and trust would be nothing but weak points in the carefully constructed wall that you had created. It was bad enough that you had already allowed at least one person to make part of that wall to come crashing down, it might be in your best interest to protect what was left of it.

You stared at her hand on yours, thinking about how she had been the one who talked you through much of your failed relationship. It was irrational really; but your mind immediately went to the fact that your relationship was over and someone needed to be blamed for that. You glanced up at her, making eye contact and wondering if it had been the plan all along. It wasn’t beyond anyone to try to make a fool of you. Perhaps she had purposely talked you through this knowing that it wouldn’t last. Maybe she was going to walk away from this conversation pleased with herself that you had suffered some form of embarrassment and disappointment.

“You didn’t have to,” you said, as you pulled your hand away from hers. You could feel the sting of tears building up. This was new. You were always so good at forcing yourself to not feel anything, but it almost felt as if you wouldn’t be able to hold back for very long. “I’ve always seen the way you all look at us, at me. You all knew that I didn’t deserve him. Me being with him didn’t stop you all from hating me.”

You were suddenly overcome with word vomit. You didn’t know why you were saying these things out loud, and you didn’t understand why you were filled with so much rage right now. Yes, the thoughts were constantly present in your mind, but you never wanted to openly admit that this was how you were feeling. The mixture of the anger, confusion, and sadness that you had been keeping in seemed to be winning over your want to just ignore it. Even though you didn’t want to say these things out loud, you couldn’t stop yourself.

“I’m not an idiot. I know that you all put up with me for his sake, you pretended to be my friend because he pretended to love me. Well, now you don’t have to pretend anymore. You can all go back to hating me, and he can join you.”

Kim looked at you in disbelief as you spoke, her mouth dropping open as if she wanted to say something in return; but her shock cut her words off before she had the chance. You wanted to shut up. You wanted to not feel the tears welling up. You wanted to stop feeling the way that you were feeling.

You stood up, knowing that you had to be done with this conversation. You didn’t know if you could hold back the tears anymore, and letting anyone see you weak would never be a good thing. You imagined your mother finding out about this as you walked away from Kim without another word. You felt your chest tighten, your breathing becoming short as you sought out some sort of refuge from everyone around you. She was going to find out, and you knew damn well that she would call you just to say ‘I told you so.’

Of course she would win in the end. She always did. The worst of it would be the reminder that no one loved you.

‘He’ll get what he wants from you and he’ll drop you just like everyone else does.’

You closed your eyes as you walked and tried to push the words from your head. It had been constant since the realization that he was gone actually hit you. It was as if you didn’t have a moment to think for yourself today, or to process what had happened. All you could do was focus on the most hurtful things your mother had ever said to you.

“This isn’t real,” you whispered to yourself once you had found a space of your own. You stood in the empty room, trying to steady your breathing. The quiet now gave you a moment to process some things. You knew that he had definitely left. It wasn’t a tantrum that he was throwing, he wasn’t going to just come back and apologize. You couldn’t blame anyone else for all of this, even though you had tried with Kim. You had done this. You had taken advantage of the entire relationship and treated him poorly, even if you hadn’t meant to. In the end, it seemed unavoidable.

You were two opposites that didn’t make sense. Two worlds that collided in what appeared to be an unexpectedly perfect union on the outside. While you were both different on every level; the world seemed to make sense when you were together. But, both of your vastly different worlds had conspired against you to remind you that the two of you just weren’t supposed to be, no matter how much you wanted to believe otherwise. Two opposites like you and Billy could never find balance. It wasn’t until now that you realized that this collision was nothing short of a cataclysm, and you wondered if you were the only one feeling the devastation of the aftermath.

Chapter Text

You returned home following what had been the most disappointing and awkward convention weekend of your life. You weren’t sure if word had spread throughout the group, but you knew that Kim knew what had happened. You figured it was only a matter of time before she opened her mouth to everyone else. That and the fact that it was probably obvious that something was up based on the way Billy went out of his way the rest of the weekend to make sure to not cross paths with you, led you to believe that everyone had figured it out.

You were a mess of feelings right now. Generally, you avoided feelings at all costs; but you felt exhausted, angry, and sad at all once. No matter how hard you tried to pretend that Billy leaving you wasn’t a big deal, you had honestly never felt so devastated in your life.

Still, your mother’s words played in your mind. Everything she had to say about him before had started to ring true now that you were no longer together. Perhaps he had been using you and quickly found his escape when you decided to make a stupid statement that hurt his feelings. You had given so much to him, only to have him walk away because you apparently didn’t know how to filter yourself.

You angrily found Jen’s number on your phone, knowing that you had to touch base with her at least. It had been a few days since you had any contact with anyone, and based on her incessant calls to you, you figured something was up.

“What do you want?” You asked when she finally picked up.

“You’re the one who called me,” she responded.

“Yeah, only because my call history is made up of nothing but your number.”

“Yeah, I’ve been trying to get a hold of you, but you’re being very difficult lately.”

“Don’t act as if that’s a new thing.”

“Look, I’m only checking in based on what’s going around on social media.”

“What now? People can’t stop talking about that thing with Misha?”

“No, it’s not that anymore. Now it’s mostly about how you and that guy might be on the rocks.”

“What?” You asked in frustration. “How is that even a thing right now?”

“You do realize that these fans are observant of everything? There’s been some mention about how things seemed off over the weekend. Neither of you were your usual selves, and the lack of pictures on Instagram have been concerning to some people.”

“We’re done,” you replied through gritted teeth. “Billy and I are no longer together. So whatever they’re saying is true.”

“I assumed as much,” she chuckled.

“This is funny to you?”

“No. Not at all. Your mom and I just figured something had happened.”

“Of course, I almost forgot that you two were so close.”

“She made plans to come out to check on you.”

“When?”

“She should be there tonight.”

“And you just now tell me this?”

“Well, I knew a couple of days ago,” she explained. “But someone doesn’t answer her calls.”


You didn’t know when to expect your mother; but you sat around that night anyway. You could have been a jerk and gone out, leaving her to fend for herself instead of waiting for her; but you knew that wouldn’t go in your favor.

When she finally did show up, you breathed out heavily as you made your way to the door. It never did get easier having to greet her. Even if you knew ahead of time that she was visiting, you couldn’t shake the heavy sense of fear and anxiousness that set in just by thinking about her being in the same room as you.

“I love that you just assume I’m around and not busy,” you said as you opened the door to her.

“Child, I know your schedule. I also know you better than you do.”

“Still, I could have been out or something.”

“You’re not though,” she replied with a grin. “Are you going to invite me in?”

You stepped aside, holding the door open for her with a sigh.

“I know why you’re here and I just- really don’t want to hear it.”

“I didn’t come to say ‘I told you so’ but…”

“I get it.”

“What happened?” She asked. She looked at you almost sympathetically. Anyone else would think that she really felt bad, but you could always tell when her concern was condescending.

“It doesn’t matter,” you replied. “You were right. You’re always right.”

“I tried to warn you. Honestly, it hurts my feelings that you never take my advice. You know that I know what’s good for you and I can tell who’s coming into your life to mess it up. He was a bad guy, and you knew it. You’re too busy trying to defy me though.”

You didn’t bother trying to argue with her. You knew deep down that Billy was not a bad guy. None of this had happened because of him; it had been all you. Unfortunately, you had learned to not take responsibility for your own actions at a young age. Not because you didn’t want to or that your mother never made you; it was simply because admitting that you were wrong only left you open for her to make you feel like shit.

“What happened?” She continued. “Did he leave you for that cute blonde that I warned you about?”

“No,” you answered simply. “It wasn’t anything like that.”

She tilted her head at you as if she were waiting for an explanation.

“It doesn’t matter,” you continued. “It’s over, and you and Jen got what you wanted.”

“Oh sweetie,” she cooed. You cringed at the term of endearment, knowing that she was about to say something to make you feel bad about yourself. “Do you really think your unhappiness makes me happy?”

You raised your brows at her, not willing to answer her again.

“Oh well,” she said with a happy smile. “On to the next. Don’t let one man ruin what you have going for you. I did try to prevent that all along, you know.”

“What is it that you’re trying to say?”

“I’m saying; since you’re finally done with him, it might be in your best interest to move on. Preferably with someone who actually matters.”

“Can we not do this right now?” You replied with a sigh. “My relationship literally just ended.”

“There’s no better time than now to bounce back. You really want people to see you sitting around feeling bad for yourself?”

“Trust me, no one is seeing me at all.”

“I can talk to Jen about setting you up with someone. There’s got to be at least one single man on that show that you’re on who worth anything.”

You watched as she scrolled through her phone, unsure of what she was even considering. You were tired and frustrated. This was so like her; not even letting you heal from disappointment before she was shoving her own agenda in your face.

“No,” you said firmly. “I don’t want that. I’m not ready for that.”

“Don’t be an idiot,” she laughed. “Do you remember what happened when you and James broke up? Or, rather when he left you when he realized the pay wasn’t worth it.”

You choked back the need to cry as she brought it up. You didn’t know what was worse; hearing that name again or hearing your own mother make a joke of the humiliating experience of someone being paid to date you without your knowledge.

You thought about how set you had been on firing Jen, and in turn getting rid of your mom. It had been a discussion that you had originally had with Billy, and now all you could think about was how you had hurt his feelings by ignoring the issue when he brought it up. You knew that you had messed up by only taking the advice when it had been offered by Rob instead. You didn’t know much about how to act in relationships; but even now you understood that it was probably best to not to disregard your partner’s thoughts just because you didn’t view him as being as successful as you.

You had done a lot of thinking over what you had done wrong; and while you were aware of what you had done, you found it difficult to admit to it to anyone else.

You realized now; as your mom sat here, spewing off thoughts about how to help you and what she could do to keep you from making more stupid decisions; you weren’t going to get rid of anyone. She was the type of person who would always figure out how to work her way back into your life, she had been doing it this entire time without you knowing. Maybe it was best not to take anyone’s advice. The very thought of getting rid of people and starting over already exhausted you, maybe it wasn’t worth it.

“Can we- can we just talk about this some other time?” You cut her off. You had zoned out and not heard most of what she had been rambling about. You were just tired.

“In this business, you don’t really have time to just sit around and mope about your life.”

“I have literally just been dumped. Forgive me if I’m not in the mood for this.”

“You’re not going to cry, are you?”

“Of course not,” you mumbled, still working hard to hold back whatever it was that you were feeling right now.

“Good, you know how I feel about that.”


You returned to Vancouver still in a mood. You were still feeling something like sadness; only now mixed with a hint of anger at the way your mother had shown up to remind you of what a failure you were. You were forced to sit back and listen to her talk as she made plans on how to completely erase the fact that Billy had even existed in your life. For some reason, the idea of him was too much for her, and she let it be known how upset she was that you had even gone down that road with someone like him.

Nothing that you did helped shake the way you were feeling recently. You spent most of your time moping around set, not really into it when it came time to actually film scenes. You didn’t realize how terrible you had been until Misha finally pulled you aside when the director called it for the day.

“Hey, you doing okay?” He asked.

“I’m fine.”

“You don’t seem fine. And, if you’re not, I get it.”

“I don’t know what you’re talking about.”

“You know everyone knows about you and Billy, right?” He said Billy’s name quietly, almost as if he was trying to protect your feelings by not discussing it casually.

“I wasn’t really aware that it was out there.”

“Just for the record, he just told some of us. It wasn’t a huge thing; I think he just wanted to get it out there. You know, get it over with.”

“It’s fine,” you replied, faking a smile. “I’m over it.”

“Really?” He asked, looking surprised. “You two were really into each other. I can’t imagine that you’d be over it in a week?”

“I’m used to disappointment,” you said. You bit your tongue, not really wanting to have said that Billy had been a disappointment. In truth, it wasn’t him at all that left you feeling so terribly.

“Come on,” he said with a smile. He linked his arm with yours and began to walk with you.

“Where are we going?”

“Dinner. I have the feeling that you’ve been wallowing in self pity for the last week.”

“I’m not really-”

“I get it. I do. But, you can’t just hole up and dwell on it. Come on, we can talk.”


Out of everyone that you actually got to act alongside on the show, Misha had always been the one you got along with most. Yes, you had come out of your shell with everyone else when you began seeing Billy; but there had been only one person who you truly felt never judged you. It’s not like you and Misha hung out as friends on the regular, in fact, you didn’t recall ever spending time alone with him like this. He had always just been someone who went out of his way to say hi and who you felt okay with maybe venting about a day with.

The two of you were seated at a local restaurant, engaging in small talk for a bit before he brought up the inevitable again.

“I’m not going to ask what happened,” he began. “It’s not my business. But you know that you can talk to me when something is bothering you.”

“Forgive me if I don’t. It’s not easy for me to talk to anyone really; which is probably a big part of why Billy left me.”

“Oh, he left you?” Misha asked, a look of something like surprised on his face.

“Yeah, it doesn’t matter. It’s not that surprising really.”

“Now, I would have thought that you had done the leaving by the way he was acting last weekend.”

“What do you mean?”

“I mean, he looked pretty devastated for someone who did the dumping. He didn’t say much, kept to himself the entire time. I don’t think I’ve ever seen that guy like that.”

“Well, I’m not sure why he would be so upset about it. But, I’m honestly okay. Even if I was the one who was dumped.” You forced a smile, staring at Misha from across the table.

“You don’t seem okay.”

“I’ve just been- off lately.”

“A break up will do that to a person.”

“Can I ask you something?” You began. You leaned in slightly, resting your elbows against the table as you caught his undivided attention.

“Ask away.”

“Why does it feel like there’s this- hole in my chest?” You felt the tears well up again as you admitted to the unfamiliar feeling that you had been experiencing. You forced them back again, studying Misha as you waited for an answer.

“I’m pretty sure that’s called heartbreak,” he said. He gave you a look of sympathy as you allowed yourself to be vulnerable for a moment.

You shook your head in response, not willing to admit that you could have a broken heart. In order for that to happen, you had to be weak. To be weak was unacceptable.

“What? You love him, right?” Misha caught on to your denial, quickly throwing in the fact that you had loved Billy immensely. You had never felt the way that you did about him with anyone else. Even through your tough exterior, you knew that everyone else could see it. You had allowed yourself to be vulnerable with Billy; he was the only person that you ever considered being that way with.

“Of course I do.”

“Well, when people that we love walk away from us, that feeling is heartbreak.”

“I’ll get over it,” you replied as you rolled your eyes.

“You never forget your first.”

“Really? Are we in high school?” You asked, getting defensive not that he seemed to be calling you out on something. “It’s not that big of a deal. Besides, how would you even know if he was my first anything?”

“Trust me, I know more about everyone than I ever wanted to.”

“I’m humiliated.”

“It’s sweet,” he smiled.

“Does everyone know that I was a- you know; before him?”

Misha cringed slightly, now feeling bad that he had said anything.

“I’m sorry,” he laughed. “Really though, don’t ever tell the girls anything that you want to keep a secret.”

“Just when I thought I was making actual friends…”

“You know, everyone still likes you. None of what was said was done with the intent of hurting you. I think everyone was just happy that you were finally letting yourself be a part of the group. Everyone was happy to see him happy finally.”

“If being a part of this group means having my private life discussed like that, maybe I don’t want to be a part of it anymore. Besides, the only reason anyone tried to be nice to me was because Billy told them to. I’m not an idiot.”

“No, you’re not,” he agreed. “Which is why I’m wondering how someone like you can supposedly fuck up with a guy like Billy. He was so into you, it was gross really.”

“That’s me,” you smiled. “The unexpected fuck up.”

“Well, just for the record, even fuck ups can be unfucked.”

You chuckled, focusing on your drink in front of you.

“What happened exactly? That is, only if you want to tell me.”

“I told him that the advice that he gave me about something meant more coming from someone who understands me better.”

“Oh no,” Misha muttered. “You did not say that to him.”

“Yeah, I did,” you replied, knowing that this was exactly what had caused him to leave. You still didn’t understand fully why it was such a deal breaker for him, but you understood that it obviously hurt his feelings. “I mean, it’s true. Rob is an actor like me, why wouldn’t I listen to his advice? Also, Billy is just a musician, he doesn’t understand this life the way that someone like Rob, or even you do.”

“Wow,” he exclaimed, “you’re serious?”

“What?!”

“You never take another man’s advice over your boyfriend’s advice. About anything. Just sayin’.”

“It doesn’t matter. Apparently I screwed up one too many times and that was the last straw.”

“Have you tried talking to him? Maybe apologizing?”

“Please don’t tell me that you’re here to try to give me advice on how to win him back.”

“Not at all. I try not to involve myself in relationships that aren’t mine.”

“Then what are you doing?”

“I just thought you could use a friend. Someone to listen to you.”

“Maybe you could do that without the added advice.”

“Okay,” he replied. “I’ll work on that.”


It wasn’t until you got home late that night when you realized that maybe it hadn’t been such a great idea to have dinner with Misha.

You absentmindedly opened your Twitter app, just wanting to check in on any updates from people you may know. You felt your breath catch when the first thing you saw was a tweet that tagged you and Misha.

“Maybe I’m confused, but you don’t generally go out with the same guy that you were accused of cheating on your boyfriend with not too long ago. Especially when rumor has it that said relationship has ended.”  Attached to the tweet was a a picture of you and Misha at dinner from earlier tonight. It was an innocent enough photo, the two of you sitting across from each other. You assumed it had been snapped by a fan, possibly the same one who wrote the ridiculous accusation.

Now that you looked at it from an outsider’s viewpoint, you realized that it did all look pretty bad. You weren’t aware that people outside of those that you worked with knew about your split, but it was obvious that they were talking.

You scrolled through your feed, stumbling across more tweets similar to the first one. For the first time in a while, you felt yourself begin to panic. It seemed that everyone was insinuating the worst. The comments ranged anywhere from people defending you and Misha’s quasi-friendship, to people dredging up those pictures from before and going on about how you were obviously unfaithful, to people expressing their disappointment in Misha himself.

You forced yourself to exit the app and set your phone aside. You were upset now. Upset that it was even a discussion that something might be going on on between the two of you, upset that you didn’t have Billy to turn to anymore, upset for Misha and what all of this could mean for him and his own family, and more upset with yourself for the way you seemed to be screwing up everyone’s lives as you worked on destroying your own.

Chapter Text

For the first time in a very long time, you hated your life. You hadn’t felt this miserable since you actually lived under your mother’s roof. The years between then and now had mostly been numbing. You were used to going through life guarding yourself and pretending as if you didn’t have feelings that could be hurt. Lately though, it all seemed to be building up enough to where you’d actually allow yourself to cry, even if it was never in front of other people.

It wasn’t so much that you felt bad for yourself at this point; now you had to face the fact that you had hurt the only person that you ever truly loved, as well as the one man who had been somewhat of a friend to you.

Misha had laughed off the entire thing as if it were no big deal. He insisted that it didn’t matter and that it would blow over. Even when you reminded him of the short lived situation from before, he still managed to keep a smile on his face as he assured you that the gossip would sort itself out. You felt bad for him and for the fact that he was just trying to be a friend, which in turn was dragging his name through the dirt. You felt bad for his family and whoever else these rumors could be hurting. You also felt bad knowing that Billy would have to see these accusations about you and Misha. A part of you knew that he wouldn’t believe it, but you couldn’t help but think that maybe he would think that it were all true. After all, you had made it clear that you valued your fellow actors more than you did him.

“Hello, earth to Y/N.”

You were startled from your thoughts, just glancing up to see Misha standing in front of you. This was the last thing you needed right now. You had made it very clear to him that it would probably be best to avoid each other if you could. It was impossible on set, but he could at least not go out of his way to make small-talk.

“Sorry, I was just thinking,” you mumbled in return.

“Don’t think too hard, you’ll hurt yourself,” he joked.

You let out a sigh in return. Usually, his bad jokes made you laugh, but you weren’t in the mood today.

“Why are you in such a good mood?” You asked.

“I’m always in a good mood.”

“Well, given the fact that you and I are the talk of the internet, I would think I wasn’t the only one a little pissed off.”

“It’ll pass, Y/N,” he said as he took a seat next to you. “It always does. I mean, the last time we shared the unwanted attention, people thought we kissed. One picture of us having dinner is nothing.”

“It’s not nothing when people were already thinking that we were messing around, only to see that we hung out outside of work. It looks bad considering all of the other stuff.”

He shrugged, still holding on to that soft smile.

“Don’t you have people who are good at cleaning up whatever messes you find yourself in?”

“Yeah, but something tells me that even they’ll milk this one for all it’s worth.”

“I can go on the record and say that we’re just friends,” he offered. “I don’t know why people listen to me, but they do.”

“I’d appreciate that,” you replied. “It just sucks that anyone has to say anything to defend us.”

“People talk, that’s what they do. I’m telling you, it will all blow over. But, I’ll try to do some damage control.”

“Thanks,” you said, grateful that he wasn’t mad at you for dragging him into this. “Does your wife know?”

“Know what?” He asked with a grin. “That I had dinner with a friend who was having a tough time recently? Yeah, she knows. She asked about you, wondered if you were doing okay.”

“That’s sweet. Tell her I said thanks for being concerned.”

“I will,” he replied. “So, are you doing okay?”

“You know, I understand that I act like I’m okay all the time. I act as if things don’t bother me. But, I’m honestly not okay.”

You felt yourself tear up and you forced the tears back. Not only had you grown to just avoid crying at all times, you also didn’t want to ruin your makeup before your scene.

“I understand. It’s tough.”

“I just- have my mom and the people who run my life constantly breathing down my neck. I make a wrong move and I never hear then end of it. I wish I knew how to remove people from my life that shouldn’t be here. They don’t care about what I’m feeling. All they care about is making sure that I am famous and that I don’t put my career on the line.”

“For a minute there, I thought you were just sad over your breakup.”

You paused, staring at him as he called you out. Surely, the mom thing was a big concern of yours. You were exhausted dealing with her constantly. Recently, your anxiety and fears and worries had only grown until you began to feel like the helpless child that you had been all those years ago. Having her show back up in your life like this; now with the knowledge that she had been involved without you even knowing it, left you feeling as if you couldn’t trust anyone anymore. That was what you focused your anger and sadness on.

Relationships were never your forte. You rarely had them, and when you did, they were lies. Billy though, he had been different. You tried to tell yourself that, after he left you, it was because he had been using you all along and finally got sick of you. Deep down, you knew why he had left. You had been the idiot. You made what you assumed to be one tiny mistake, and he had bailed. Only, you realized that it wasn’t some minuscule thing that pissed him off. You had offended him deeply. You insulted him and your relationship by brushing off his advice, only to accept it from someone else. It had nothing to do with his pride or your stubbornness. At the end of the day, it was about whether or not you respected him as your partner. Even you understood that you never did show him the respect that he deserved.

“I am sad,” you admitted. You felt a tear fall down your cheek and you hurriedly wiped it away as you tried to regain your composure. “I miss him. I hurt him and I hate myself for that every day.”

No matter how hard you tried to hold back, no matter how good you were at hiding your feelings, you started to cry. You sobbed as you tried to tell yourself that this wasn’t allowed. You weren’t allowed to be weak. But you didn’t stop. You just held your face in your hands as you let it all out.


When you returned to your apartment at the end of the day, you were exhausted. Your little breakdown had taken a lot out of you, and you were sort of pissed that Misha had let you cry like that in front of him. Even his movement to hug you and comfort you hadn’t helped. Instead, the crew had to push back your scene so you could compose yourself and go back to makeup and wardrobe to fix the new mess you had made. You actually sat through getting your makeup reapplied, choking back more tears that threatened to come.

The day had gone on longer than expected, all because of you. Right now, you hated yourself for it. Pushing back scenes didn’t affect just you, you had let everyone else down as well.

You changed into pajamas and immediately fell into your bed. You wanted sleep. You wanted to forget this whole day had happened. For the first time in a long time, you wanted to not wake up the next morning.

You laid in bed, wide awake despite how tired you were. You couldn’t help but think about this mess with Misha and how bad it looked for you. You thought about your mother again and how afraid you were of her. Mostly, you thought about Billy. You tried to focus on the good, because there had been so much good between the two of you. But, your mind wandered to what you had done and what you had said to him.

You let yourself cry some more, a little less subdued now that you were alone. You cried until sleep found you.


A couple of week later, you arrived in Minneapolis. You had decided to back out of the last con weekend, citing that you had other work commitments. In reality, you just wanted time to heal a bit. You really wanted to avoid seeing Billy, knowing that you could very easily fall apart when you did have to be near him. All those years of locking your feelings up were slowly starting to crumble. You were no longer able to remain unfeeling.

As you made your way to the convention center, you felt yourself panic. You hated that you always had to be in attendance on the first day and stay through the weekend. Misha and the guys had it easy; show up on the last day or two and leave. You wished that could be you. You wished you could just show up for one day, do your thing, and book it out of there. You understood that by deciding to be here, you would have to be near Misha quite a bit when he arrived. You hated the idea of what people were going to say about that.

More concerning for you was that you knew you would be near Billy the entire weekend. You’d be on stage and he’d be there; if only for a moment. You’d be in the greenroom, and he’d be there a lot of the time too. You didn’t know if you could handle seeing him, much less having to be around him.

Yes, this was all your fault. He had left because of something that you did. But that didn’t change the fact that you felt an ache in your chest every time you thought about him. Knowing that you fucked up didn’t make the fact that he walked out on you hurt any less.

Just as expected, some of the other actors and the band were already in the greenroom when you walked in that first morning. Your eyes found Billy first, even though you didn’t want to look at him. Your breath caught when he had done the same thing. He looked right at you as you walked in and you made eye contact briefly before he darted his eyes away, staring down at his guitar as he went back to strumming.

Your heart sank. It wasn’t unexpected, of course he was trying to avoid you in any way he could. It hurt just knowing that he didn’t even want to look at you.

You suddenly felt very small, the same way you constantly felt when you had started working the conventions and were forced to be around these people. The only reason anyone ever paid you any mind was because you had started dating Billy. Now that it was over, you knew that you’d go right back to being the outcast. The thought of it made you angry. Now, you had an overwhelming combination of feelings brewing inside. You wanted to cry again, but you forced yourself not to.


The day went on and you went through your responsibilities in a daze. It wasn’t fair to anyone here that your heart just wasn’t in it. You couldn’t even pretend to be happy to be here.The one person who made you feel wanted wouldn’t even look at you. The thought of it nagged at you the entire day.

You thought back to the way Misha had inadvertently recommended that you apologize. He had been right about a lot of things. He was the one who made you realize that what you had done had been wrong. He had even pointed out that Billy had been your first in a few different way. You blushed as you remembered the conversation. Yes, he had been your first in an intimate way; but more importantly, he had been your first real love. That was why this was so damn hard.

You didn’t know if it was the fact that you were now forced to see Billy all day long, or if it had possibly been eating at you for weeks now; but you knew you had to apologize. He was a good man and, while you shouldn’t have insulted him in the first place, you knew you couldn’t go on allowing him to think that you didn’t respect him. The only problem was that you had no knowledge of how to handle these things. Your last breakup with your fake boyfriend had hurt in a way, mostly it had hurt your ego. But it was nothing like this. The constant pain and the sleepless nights and the sudden breakdowns for no reason were a new thing to you. Knowing that you had to set things right with someone was a new thing.

You played the possibilities in your mind for a while. You imagined how you could apologize without making things worse. In every imagined scenario, it never went well for you. Every time, he still walked away from you. No matter what you said in these made up interactions, he never stayed in the end. Still, you knew you had to do it. He had to know that you loved him even if you were terrible at showing it.

You figured you’d find him on another day later in the weekend to talk to him. You had somewhat of an idea of what to say stored in your mind. You just wanted the right time to actually say it.

You were walking alone down the long hotel corridor to the rooms at the end of the day, going over everything in your mind. You must have been completely lost in thought because you didn’t even know anyone else was in the corridor with you. You had simply noticed when suddenly someone walk right past you in the opposite direction.

You glanced up just as they passed, sort of startled by the suddenness of someone being right there. Your eyes followed the person and your breath caught when you realize who it was.

You weren’t much of a believer in things like fate or chance or luck; but the fact that you were just playing out an apology in your mind for Billy, and the fact that he had literally just walked past you right now, you decided that you were willing to change your belief system.

You didn’t think. You just acted. You switched your direction and walked quickly behind him, your short legs having a difficult time keeping up with his long strides. When you finally caught up to him, you reached out and placed your hand on his arm. You didn’t grab him and stop him like you wanted to. You simply touched him, only hoping that he might turn around.

You didn’t really expect him to; but he stopped in his tracks, you nearly running into him as he did so. He turned to face you, looking down at you with no real expression. You stared at him for a moment, quiet since you didn’t know what to say at first. You never even thought he’d stop. You didn’t think he’d ever look at you again.

“Hey,” you said. You kicked yourself as soon as the word left your mouth. It sounded stupid considering everything. But you were very suddenly at a loss for words.

“Hey,” he replied. His blank expression still didn’t budge. Not having him smile at you made you uncomfortable, and you knew you probably should do this. But he was still standing there. He seemed to be waiting for something.

“Um, you guys were really good today,” you blurted out. Again, you hated yourself for how awkward you were being.

“Thanks, we pretty much just played the same set we always do on the first day.”

“I know,” you mumbled. You were uncomfortable; not something you were used to feeling around him. There was so much you wanted to say, but you didn’t know how.

“Did you need something?”

“No. I just- wanted to say hi.”

“Hi,” he replied. You couldn’t be sure, but you thought you saw a hint of a smile beneath that mess of a beard.

You stood there awkwardly again, still not able to say what you wanted to say to him. He gave you a forced grin, probably unsure of what was going on.

“Okay,” he began. “I’m just gonna go.”

He hesitated for a moment before turning from you, already taking those steps away from you. That was when you panicked. For some reason, it was like watching him walk away the first time. Your heart raced, the tears welled up, and you knew you couldn’t let him go; not when you had so much to say to him, even if it didn’t fix anything.

“Billy, wait,” you called out, voice cracking. There is was. The moment his name left your lips, the waterworks started. You felt like an idiot again. You had tried so hard not to act like a stupid child, but you were crying now. He turned back around to look at you, face falling into a look of disappointment when he saw you like this. He stayed where he was, just a few feet from you, and just watched you and waited.

“I’m sorry,” you choked out finally. “I know it doesn’t matter now, but I am sorry.”

It was all you could muster in the moment. There was so much more you could say, but even you still had your limits. It was bad enough that you were crying in front of him like this.

You expected nothing from any of this really. Having come to terms with what you had done, you knew that you needed to at least apologize, even if it meant nothing in the end. He didn’t deserve to go on thinking that you didn’t respect him. Although you were bad at showing it, you hoped you were less bad at sort of saying it.

“You didn’t deserve to be treated like that,” you continued. You stopped yourself and wiped the tears from your face, annoyed that you had allowed him to see you like this.

You let the silence take over again as the two of you stood there, just looking at each other. The fact that his expression still hadn’t changed made you feel worse. Maybe your half-assed apology meant nothing. Maybe your behavior was unforgivable. It wasn’t that you expected him to forgive you, you just assumed he deserved an apology, and that maybe apologizing would make you feel less shitty. It didn’t though. Now, you just felt worse because you wanted him back and you knew that it wasn’t going to happen.

He finally made a movement toward you after a moment of considering it. You watched him as he took a few steps toward you. Maybe he just wanted to tell you to your face that you were a bitch, you deserved that at least. Instead, you gasped as he wrapped his arms around you and pulled you into him. It took a moment to process what was happening, but the moment his beard brushed against your neck, you realized he was hugging you. You immediately wrapped your own arms around him, grasping onto him as you were suddenly fearful that he would let go and walk away from you again.

Chapter Text

You weren’t sure how many times you repeated your ‘I’m sorry’s’ to Billy as he held you; but you were certain that the phrase continued to leave your lips in hopes that it mattered. You cried as you grasped onto him, afraid to let him go at all. You didn’t know what this was right now, but you wanted to hold onto it for as long as you could in case he walked away again when he was done hugging you.

The two of you stayed like that for some time; you crying and apologizing while he held you silently. The silence from him scared you a bit. When he finally pulled back from you, you kept your hands gripped tight onto his arms, afraid to let go if even just for a moment.

“Why are you crying?” He asked as he reached a hand up and quickly wiped away some of your tears. “I hate seeing you upset.”

“Because I’m and idiot,” you admitted. “I was a jerk and I miss you so much.”

He darted his eyes from yours nervously, pulling back even more as you spoke. You took that as your sign to let go of him, knowing that it was a long shot that he’d ever give you another chance.

“I miss you too,” he replied, finally looking at you again. “But I don’t really know what you expect from me.”

“I don’t expect anything,” you replied. “I’ve just- been trying to get the nerve to apologize is all.”

“Well, thank you. That took… a really long time.”

“I know,” you mumbled as you stared at the ground. “I’m not very good at this stuff.”

“You’re getting better at it,” he said with a small smile.

You kept your eyes on the ground, unsure of how to act or what to say next. He had put a bit of distance between you, and while you weren’t well-versed in social interactions, you assumed that this meant he wanted to keep you at a distance. No matter how much you wanted to have him hold you again, you knew what was happening. He was letting you know that he did still care, but also reminding you that you had messed up.

“Look, I’ve got this thing I’ve got to do,” he continued. “Thanks for the apology. It meant a lot.”

You choked back more tears and nodded your head at him, still not looking up at him as he waited for a moment.

“I’ll see you around, Y/N.” With that he had turned and walked away.

You don’t know what you had expected really. Maybe you figured a real apology would instantly fix things, maybe he would forgive you on the spot and tell you that he wanted to take you back. Deep down you understood that it was a long-shot. You knew that you were reaching.

When he was finally out of eye-sight, you let out a deep breath and let yourself cry some more. You didn’t know what else to do. Nothing had ever hurt quite like this and no one had ever ment as much to you as Billy did.

You were still trying to process your feelings during this break-up, and seeing him again and speaking to him like this only made your heart hurt a little more.

You didn’t know if you could make it through the rest of the weekend having to see him constantly. You didn’t know how much more disappointment and hurt your heart could take.


You didn’t sleep well that night. Mostly, you tossed and turned, berating yourself over your interaction with Billy. You wondered if there was something that you could have done differently in that moment. Maybe you should have said something else or begged him to take you back. Begging was below you usually, but you had felt desperate enough in that moment to actually consider it. You missed him terribly, and you just wanted him back.

By the next morning, you were barely functioning as you sat in the greenroom. You had your coffee in hand and you yawned dramatically as the others made their way in to join you. You hated that you were always one of the ones who had the earlier panels.

You avoided even looking at Billy when he showed up, knowing that it was just going to continue to hurt every time you had to see him. You thought about the possibility of just not doing cons anymore just to avoid him.

You went through your morning as usual. You sat in on a panel with some of the other ladies, mostly staying quiet unless someone directly addressed you. You really just wanted this weekend to be over with. After doing some photo ops, you headed back toward the greenroom when you ran into Misha in the hallway. You frowned when he stopped you, immediately letting your mind go to that place in which everyone who could see the two of you talking was automatically assuming that the two of you were caught up in some torrid love affair based on the recent social media stuff.

You hesitantly acknowledged him though and he spoke to you as if none of that was even on his mind.

“You never said your mother was coming to visit,” he said.

You felt a knot form in your throat as he said it, shaking your head in confusion at him.

“Wh-what?”

“Your mom, she’s waiting for you in the greenroom. You didn’t mention that she would be here this weekend.”

“Oh,” you replied, still in a state of shock as you tried to let his words sink in. “She didn’t mention in either.”

“Whoops, maybe it was supposed to be a surprise,” he smiled.

“Well, either way, it’s definitely a surprise,” you responded as you pushed past him. You didn’t want to hang around him too much if it meant you could add less fuel to the rumors about you. Also, you really needed to see why your mother was here and hope to avoid any drama that she could possibly stir up.

“What are you doing here?” You asked the minute you walked into the room and saw her. Already, the anxiety that you had started with this weekend was peaking. Just seeing her had you on edge.

“Surprise,” she said with a smile as she approached you.

Before you could act, she threw her arms around you, pulling you in for an awkward hug as some of your co-workers looked on. You tried not to make it look so unpleasant, but you couldn’t remember the last time she had ever shown you affection like this, even if it was forced. You knew she was only doing this to keep up with appearances. No one other than Billy really knew what kind of person she was. You had talked about your relationship with some of the others briefly, but as far as they could tell in this moment, you had an okay relationship with her.

“Why are you here?” You repeated, still confused.

“I came to see you in your element,” she beamed.

“Can we talk?” You asked as you forced back tears.

“Of course.”

You led the way to one of the other rooms that was set aside for the cast. No one really used the space as everyone liked to hang out together, so you were relieved when you found it was empty as you led her inside. You closed the door shut behind you before you faced her.

“Really. What are you doing here?” You demanded.

“Honestly, I just wanted to see what it was that you did with your waste of a life. I always said acting was a stupid choice, and I see that you spend most of that time sitting around.”

“If you wanted to degrade me and my job, you could’ve just called. You didn’t have to actually show up at my place of work.”

“I wouldn’t call this work,” she mumbled as she looked around, face turned up in disgust.

“Please, just go. I can’t focus knowing that you’re here.”

“You’ve always been so horrible to me,” she replied as she returned her focus to you. “I can’t think of anyone else who would talk to their parent this way.”

“You’re right, I’m a horrible human being. Thanks for reminding me again. Now please, just go.”

“Relax,” she chuckled as she rolled her eyes. “I just wanted to drop by to make sure you’re doing okay.”

“Right,” you said sarcastically.

“By the way, I met Misha.” She paused, giving you a look. It was the same way she always looked at you when she interfered with your life and insisted that you try to set yourself up with someone on the show who was maybe a little more famous than you. “He’s lovely.”

“He’s married,” you reminded her. “We’re friends.”

“I’m just saying, a little gossip doesn’t always hurt a career.”

“You’re out of your mind.,” you replied.

Just as you were about to try to convince her to leave, your handler found you. She paused at the door, signaling to you that it was time for some other responsibility that you had this weekend. More photo ops? Autographs? You weren’t sure anymore. Right now, you just wanted your mom to leave and you knew you didn’t have time to convince her.

“I’ve got work to do,” you told her. “Can you please just go.”

“I’ll wait for you,” she smiled. “I like your friends. Maybe I’ll stick around and chat with them some more.”

You swallowed hard, wanting so badly to just yell at her and demand that she leave. The last thing you wanted was for her to interact with anyone else here, even if you knew they weren’t actually your friends.

“What about whats-his-face? Is he still around?” You took note of the smirk that formed on her lips as she brought him up.

You knew that she was trying to get to you, and it was working. Billy was a soft spot for you. He was the only person who had ever meant anything to you, and she was well aware of it. She wanted to hit a nerve, and she understood the exact buttons to push. She knew to speak of him as if he were no one, purposely forgetting his name. She knew to bring him up in the first place, especially since she understood that the wounds from the breakup were still fresh.

She enjoyed hurting you, and she would use every little thing that she could think of to do so.The problem was that you couldn’t stop her. Over the years, you had become better at letting her know when she was overstepping; but it didn’t stop you from being afraid of her.

“Yes, he’s still around,” you said softly. “But, we aren’t talking. So, I would appreciate it if you didn’t talk to him either.”

“I wouldn’t dream of it,” she replied. “How could I even acknowledge the man who broke my sweet girls’ heart?”

You clenched your jaw at her words and made your way out of the room, following your handler. The idea of leaving your mother with everyone else was the worst feeling in the world. She was sly and manipulative. It had taken you years to realize it. You could only hope that even she had her limits about the people she chose to manipulate. You may not be on the best of terms with everyone here, but you still didn’t want for any of them to have to experience the kind of person she was.


You had finished a round of autographs and were making your way quickly back to the greenroom in hopes of intercepting whatever bullshit your mom was feeding to anyone who happened to be in the same space. Just as you were walking, the guys in the band were headed in the opposite direction. You cringed when you saw them headed your way and you quickly ducked your head, not wanting to even look at Billy again.

It was bad enough that you were heartbroken every time you saw him, but you also had your mom to deal with today. You could really only handle one thing at a time.

Your attempt at going unnoticed didn’t go as planned; because once he was right near you, Billy reached out, taking a hold of your arm to stop you. You let him get your attention and your chest ached as you looked up into his eyes.

“I’m sort of in a hurry,” you explained. You tried to move out of his grip, feeling even worse since he was touching you.

“I imagine so,” he replied. “Talk to me.”

“Looks like you’re busy,” you nodded in the direction of the rest of the guys who hadn’t stopped.

“We’re just heading to autographs, I’ve got a second.”

“Well, I don’t,” you breathed out. “Please, just let me go.”

He let go of your arm instantly and you hesitated, wondering if you should get to your mother instantly or if it would be best to give Billy a moment. Your need to have interaction with him was being overshadowed by the need to stop your mother. There was no telling what sort of bullshit she was pulling on the others.

“Why is she here?” He asked, referring to your mother.

“I don’t know,” you shrugged. “She just showed up out of the blue. I have to go deal with her.”

“Don’t,” he began. He looked at you sort of sadly and you waited. “I really don’t like the way she treats you. You should let someone else tell her to leave.”

“She’s my mom,” you reminded him. “I can handle her. In fact, I was on my way to do that until you stopped me.”

“Obviously I was really concerned when I realized it was her. I had to check in on you.”

“No, you didn’t,” you said sharply. “Look, I appreciate that you’re pretending to be concerned or whatever; but I’m not your responsibility any more.”

“Y/N, I know this has been hard. But I know better than anyone how she is with you and I’m really worried that she’s here.”

“Okay, great. Thanks for that.” Your words began to run together. You wanted to get out of here quickly, but you couldn’t even get your own feet to move now that he was talking to you. “You don’t have to worry about me.”

“Let me tell her to go,” he offered. You saw the look of hurt in his eyes. You couldn’t be sure if it was because he had experienced first hand how horrible she was or if he might really be sad about the breakup as well. All you did know is that you were tired of people feeling bad for you and trying to fix your problems.

“No,” you nearly shouted. “That’s the worst idea ever. She hates you, almost as much as she hates me. She thinks that you dumping me was the greatest thing to ever happen. Do not get involved, because you don’t have to be involved anymore. I’m used to her. I’ve been living with this my entire life. I’ve got this.”

“It might mean more to have someone else stand up to her, Y/N,” he began as you turned and started to walk away. “She walks all over you and you let her.”

“Why the hell does it even matter to you?” You responded. You stopped briefly turned to look at him again, giving him an exasperated sigh.

You were frustrated with him now and his fake concern. You understood that things were over between the two of you; you had been the one to ensure that. At the same time, you didn’t understand why he suddenly felt the need to play concerned right now. You obviously didn’t matter to him anymore; why couldn’t he just leave it alone?

You didn’t give him a chance to reply before you turned from him again and continued on your way.

Chapter Text

You wished that you hadn’t talked to Billy that way. It wasn’t the smartest choice of words when you had spent the last few weeks wishing that things had been different. It was the combined stress of knowing your mother was around and having to see Billy every day that made you snap.

You wish you could say that you appreciated his sentiment, but you really didn’t. He knew better than anyone what your relationship with your mother was like, so having him step in and offer to handle this when he obviously didn’t even love you anymore was a lot to handle.

You found her sitting quietly in the green room where you had left her. For now, she wasn’t talking to anyone else at least, and you hoped that she hadn’t while you were gone.

You took a deep breath as you approached her, knowing that you had to convince her to leave before she decided to embarrass you, or even worse, upset you in front of anyone.

“It’s time to go,” you said as you motioned for her to get up.

“What? Why would I go?”

“Because this is my place of work, and you can’t be here.”

“Don’t be stupid,” she chuckled. “I’m visiting my daughter that I never see.”

“First of all, you’ve seen me way too much recently. Secondly, us having no contact for so many years was your fault.”

You caught sight of Billy and the rest of the guys out of the corner of your eye. Most of your coworkers didn’t seem to be paying attention to any of this, but you knew that Billy was watching.

“Y/N, you found her,” you heard Misha’s voice before you even noticed him enter the room. You spun around to look at him, sort of annoyed that he chose this moment to make his appearance.

“Misha,” you began. “Yeah, I did. I was just seeing her out actually.”

“Misha?” You mother mused. “Oh, I recognize you now. You’re the man who was caught in some precarious situations with my daughter. You’re a big name on this show.”

“All of that was misconstrued,” Misha chuckled. “We’re friends.”

“What a shame,” she said sarcastically. “How much do I have pay you to really date her?”

“Excuse me?”

Misha pulled back in shock by her question. He kept a slight uncomfortable smile, not sure if she was joking or not.

“Well, that’s the only way men stay interested in her. Obviously, she can’t even keep a man who’s a nobody. Doesn’t surprise me really.”

“Um, I’m not sure I know what you’re talking about.”

“It’s nothing. I just had to pay one of her ex boyfriend to date her,” she explained. “I’m not sure what kept the last one around for as long as he stayed. Maybe Jen paid him as well.”

You were humiliated now as she let it be known how pathetic you were. The fact that someone had been paid to go out with you wasn’t something you liked for other people to know.

You looked at Billy, suddenly questioning if this could be true. You didn’t put it past your mother or your people at all, but you never considered that Billy of all people could have been a part of something like that.

The only thing that made you stop and calm down was the memory of how they had tried to talk you out of staying with him. They were sure that he was bad for your image, there was no way that they would have paid him to be with you.

Now, you were more sad over the fact that the only reason you knew your mother was lying right now was because she didn’t even like Billy. You were disappointed when you realized that the real reason to not believe her was because you knew that Billy truly did love you. But, even you weren’t so sure anymore.

“That’s not true, Y/N,” Billy began. “No one told me to be with you. I wasn’t using you.”

“I know,” you replied.

By this point, your mother’s loud conversation with Misha and her subsequent shit-talking directed toward Billy had garnered the attention of everyone else in the room. All eyes were on you and you wanted to just disappear. You had spent a lot of time trying to look normal in front of these people, the last thing you wanted was for them to witness just how screwed up your relationship with your mom was. Even more, you didn’t want them to see how cruel she could be to the people you cared about.

“Regardless,” your mother continued as she focused on Misha again. “I think you’d be good for her.”

“Oh well,” Misha stuttered, looking extremely uncomfortable now. “I’m married and all. Also, Y/N and I are strictly friends.”

You appreciated that he was trying to reason with her nicely, but you also knew that it didn’t matter. She was going to find some way to insult him or you if you didn’t stop this.

“Okay,” you cut in. “Very funny mom.”

You reached over and grabbed her arm, tugging at her in an attempt to get her to follow you. She frowned and pulled her arm out of your grasp instead.

“Don’t touch me,” she spat.

The way she looked at you now left you cowering. You knew you couldn’t force her to leave if she didn’t want to, not if you wanted to maintain any sort of dignity right now.

“It’s really time for you to go,” you replied. “Please.”

“Who’s going to make me?” She asked. Her voice had lowered enough to cause the panic within you to rise. You always hated the way her voice sounded when she was challenging you like this. It scared you, and you didn’t want to look so helpless in front of everyone right now.

“Are you really going to try to force me out of here?” She asked. Her eyes burned into you and you stared at the ground in defeat. “Are they going to make me leave?” You could see her motion with her hand to everyone else who was standing around.

“Obviously not,” you replied. “But, I’m asking you nicely. Please. Please don’t do this in front of my friends.”

You looked up at her, pleading with your eyes for her to not act like this right now. It was bad enough that your friends knew that you were strange and sort of rude, you really didn’t want them to see that you were all sorts of screwed up because of your own mother.

“Obviously you don’t have any friends here,” she smirked. “It doesn’t surprise me.”

“Please,” you begged as you avoided the stares of the others. You knew your pleading was pointless. Once she had it in her mind to put you down, she usually didn’t stop. For now, all you could do was wish to disappear or at least to have everyone else walk away before it got worse.

“I swear, I’m the only one that you have in your life. I don’t blame them,” she said as she motioned to your coworkers. “You’ve never had friends and it’s because you have a poor attitude. You’re a horrible person, and it shows.”

You let her words sink in. It wasn’t anything new. She had been telling you that you were horrible for as long as you could remember. It was so constant, you believed it.

“You can’t even keep a man interested in you for long enough to make it count,” she continued.

You couldn’t help the way your eyes darted up to focus on Billy again.

“I was wondering how long you would make that last. I was right when I told you that he didn’t love you.”

You hung your head and looked away from him as your mother reminded you just how unlovable you were. You thought you could avoid this. You thought you could just show up to work as usual and get through it. You thought no one else in the world would ever know this much about you.

“Hey, you need to back off.”

You heard the voice speak up suddenly and you knew it was Billy. You couldn’t bring yourself to even show that you were grateful right now. You were feeling smaller than usual, in a way that only she was capable of making you feel.

“Excuse me?” She replied, sort of surprised that anyone had said anything.

“I told you to back off.”

“Are you going to let him talk to me like that?”

Once you realized that she was talking to you again, you looked up at her, noticing the look of disgust on her face that she seemed to reserve specifically for Billy. You glanced over to him next. He looked angry. The same way he had looked when you hurt him with your behavior.

“Billy, don’t…” you began, shaking your head and hoping that he would just back down.

“No, this is not okay,” he shouted. “She treats you like shit, and you let her.”

“She’s my mother,” you reminded him. “She’s just honest. A lot more honest than anyone else has ever been with me.”

“That’s not honesty, Y/N. That’s bullying.”

“I don’t even know why it concerns you,” your mother cut in. “Aren’t you the one who left her? Aren’t you the reason she was crying just weeks ago in front of me even though I hate crying?”

“That doesn’t matter,” he began.

“It does matter. It matters because you broke my daughter’s heart and treated her like shit; yet, here you are trying to tell her that I’m the bully when I’m the only one who loves her.”

“Is that how you show love? You degrade your own child and make her believe that she’s worthless?”

“Stop it,” you muttered, knowing that no one had heard you in the middle of the argument that was quickly growing heated. You were humiliated. You had your own mother saying such horrible things to you and your ex-boyfriend defending you and all you wanted was for it to stop.

“Like she said, I’m honest with her. That’s what love is.”

“This is not love,” Billy reiterated.

He stepped closer to you now and you breathed out in frustration that he was even standing up for you.

“How would you know?” She continued. “You don’t love her.”

“Will you please just stop?” You shouted suddenly. You felt the tears slip down your face as you began to sob.

“Really? Now you’re crying again? Stop it, you are not a child.”

“Of course I’m not, you never let me be a child.”

“Don’t raise your voice at me.”

“You are a terrible mother,” you muttered without thinking.

Never in your entire life had you ever told her that. No matter how often you thought it, you would never dream of saying it out loud.

You felt the sudden sting across your face as she brought her hand down. The movement startled you and then left you frozen as you covered your face with your hand. It had been a long time since she had felt the need to slap you. Right now, you understood that you said something truly terrible for her to have done it in front of other people.

“I’m sorry,” you breathed out as you stared at her, mouth agape.

She stared at you angrily as you tried to stutter out another apology. It was then that Billy stepped in between the two of you.

“God knows I would never hit a woman,” he said calmly as he spoke to her. “But I won’t sit back and let you hurt her.”

You stared at his back that was facing you, still with your hand covering the place where your mother’s hand had hit you. You were in shock, but you considered trying to convince Billy to not get involved. At the same time, you couldn’t bring yourself to speak up or even move.

“It’s none of your business what I do with my own child,” she said coldly. “I’m all she has, and I doubt that she wants you of all people to have a say in anything.”

Billy turned to face you then. He placed a gentle hand over yours that was still covering your cheek.

“Just say the word and we’ll get her out of here,” he whispered.

You shook your head at him, still crying. He could tell that you were afraid. He knew you better than anyone and always had a way of reading you like a book.

“You don’t have to let her control your life anymore,” he continued.

You stayed quiet for a moment as you watched him. This was the old Billy that you had come to love. He was gentle and caring, letting you know that he had your back even if things weren’t great between the two of you. He was the one who had left you, but right now, you understood that he still cared about you.

You glanced around the room, feeling more humiliated by the way the others were watching this entire thing unfold in an equal amount of shock. No one knew what to do. You were sure none of them had ever witnessed something like this.

“Make her go away,” you said softly. You felt like a child again; the way you said the words in a broken voice, the way you had to have someone else step in to protect you from her.

Billy simply nodded and turned back to face her.

“I suggest you leave before I make you leave.”

“You wouldn’t,” she smirked in return as she folded her arms over her chest as if she were challenging him.

“Hmm,” he thought for a moment. “You’re right. I wouldn’t because I’m a nice guy. But, fortunately for us, we have security.”

You watched as Billy motioned for the security guys who were standing by waiting. You weren’t sure how long they had been there, you only assumed someone had called them in when this whole thing had started. Just in case.

The two men approached her and began to escort her out. Even she didn’t put up a fight. She knew that these men would do their job, even if she happened to be related to one of the actors here.

She shot you a glare as she followed the men, and you knew that you most certainly wouldn’t hear the end of it. You remained anxious until she was no longer in sight. Once she was out the door, you breathed a little easier and relaxed; that is, until you remembered that everyone had seen that whole thing.

“You okay?” Billy asked as he turned back to you. Again, his hands were on you; one running along your stinging cheek, the other caressing your arm.

You pulled away from him then, not wanting him to be touching you. It was too much given this situation.

“I’m fine,” you nearly shouted. “Just leave me alone.”

Embarrassed, you decided that you needed to get out of there. You moved to the other side of the room and retrieved your bag and jacket. You couldn’t get yourself to stop shaking as you continued to sob. This was the worst thing that could happen at work of all places. You wanted out of there and you wanted away from these people.

It was Misha who stepped in next to help you. He took your belongings from you, noting how badly you were shaking and that you probably needed assistance. You let him help you. Out of everyone here, he was the only one who was kind to you and understanding. He also knew how difficult the break up had been, so you knew he was stepping in to keep Billy from making things worse.

“I need to leave,” you said to him.

“Yeah, no problem,” he replied. He placed a hand against your back and started to escort you from the room. “We’ll get you out the back way and back to your hotel. Does she know where you’re staying though?”

You shook your head as you walked, “I don’t think so.”

“Misha,” Billy started as he walked toward you. “Let me help her.”

You closed your eyes, trying to hold back more tears. Misha must have caught on to the fact that this entire emotional display wasn’t just about your mothers behavior.

“I don’t think she wants your help,” he replied. “I got it.”

You sighed as Misha continued to lead you out of the room. Billy had stopped in his tracks and you weren’t sure what he was feeling right now, you really didn’t care.

As you left, you considered whether it would be a better idea to just back out of the rest of the con. Surely you had made an idiot out of yourself. You knew everyone was going to be talking about you.

By now, the shock of having your mother hit you in front of everyone had pretty much worn off. You were used to it after all. Even after so many years of avoiding her, the fact that she’d hit you didn’t surprise you. Right now, you knew your real pain was coming from the way Billy stepped in to protect you when he really had no right to do so.


Chapter Text

“Do you need anything?” Misha asked as he watched you throw your stuff on your hotel room floor.

You immediately flopped down on your bed, still crying.

“I’m fine,” you mumbled. “Please just go.”

He said nothing, but you heard him slowly make his way to the door. You only looked up when you heard the door close to make sure that he was gone.

You were alone again. It was what you wanted after all. Alone was good. No one could hurt you if you were alone.

You let out a stuttered sigh as you forced yourself to stop crying, your mothers constant words replaying in your head. You turned onto your back and stared up at the ceiling, wishing that all of that had just been a nightmare. You never wanted anyone to have to be a part of that.

You couldn’t decide of you were more angry, scared, or humiliated by that entire display. You never imagined that she would take things that far in front of other people. She always did have a way of almost inadvertently saying things to embarrass you in front of others, but today had been surprisingly shocking to even you. Not once in the past had she ever shown up to your place of work, attacking anyone who seemed to stand in her way of taking things out on you. The most shocking thing had been the way that she had hit you for everyone to see.

She was usually so precise and calculated; knowing just how to get to you without cluing anyone else in on how terrible she was.

You felt completely lost now. This life that you felt you had so much control over was slowly crashing down around you. You felt bad for yourself, sure; but you would never acknowledge that to anyone else. Even more, you felt bad for your friends that had been caught off-guard by her behavior.

Misha didn’t deserve to be dragged into this. He was your friend and nothing more. You certainly didn’t see him as anything more than that, and the two of you had gone through your fair share of unsupported rumors as it was.

Then, there was Billy. The one person that you had thought had cared about you at some point, and regardless of how things ended, he still came to your defense even when she went after him. At this point, you sort of felt that his intervening had made things worse.

You knew the ache you were feeling wasn’t so much from the mother that you were numb to, it was from seeing the man that you loved still stick up for you. Just being near him was pain enough.

You had only been lying there alone on your for a short time when you heard a faint knock at your door. Your heart stopped, suddenly wondering if your mother had somehow found out where you were staying. She had her ways of always finding you, and you really didn’t want to deal with her any more today.

You quietly made your way to the door, knowing that if you didn’t make a sound, she’d most likely leave thinking that you weren’t there. You pressed against the door softly and peered through the peephole.

You didn’t expect to see Billy standing there. If anything, you had thought that you had made it very clear that you wanted him to leave you alone. You stayed quiet as you pressed your forehead against the door, willing him to go away. You couldn’t do this right now. Hopefully if you stayed quiet, he’d just leave.

“Y/N,” you heard him call out after a moment. “I know you’re here. Misha said he got you back to your room and you were still upset.”

“Go away,” you responded through the door. “Please just leave me alone.”

“Please let me talk to you,” he pleaded in return.

Not wanting to fight with anyone anymore, you sighed heavily and at least opened the door to him.

“Can this wait?” You asked as you peeked out at him. “I’ve had a rough day.”

“I just wanted to see if you were okay.”

“Why?”

“Because I worry about you.”

“Well, don’t. I’m not yours to worry about anymore.”

“Can I come in?”

You hesitated, wondering why he even wanted to. It wasn’t like the two of you had ended on good terms. You had been an asshole and he certainly didn’t hesitate when he walked out on you. You assumed the two of you were far past the whole ‘checking in on each other’ phase.

“Why?” You asked. “What’s the point? You want me to let you in so I can just be more upset than I already am?”

“Do I upset you?”

“Every time I have to see you,” you admitted. “I know it’s my own fault. But that doesn’t make it hurt any less.”

“I didn’t realize…”

“Yeah, well, I’m pretty good at pretending that I have no feelings.”

“I just- kinda figured you didn’t really care when I left.”

“Why wouldn’t I?”

Billy glanced up as a couple of people walked past him in the hallway. He turned back to you, pleading now.

“Can I come in so we can talk?”

Knowing that you had been a jerk, and he had at least stepped in to defend you against your mother, you figured it was the least you could to to hear him out. You stepped aside and let him enter, closing the door behind him.

“Look, Y/N. I figured you didn’t care when I left because of what you did to make me leave. I was hurt. I really felt that you didn’t respect me. You also never tried to talk to me, you didn’t do or say anything to show me that you wanted me to stay.”

“I apologized,” you reminded him. “I cried in front of you when I did apologize.”

“Yeah, that came a long time after I left.”

“Not that it matters; but I was devastated when you left. I’ve never… had to feel this way before. You were my first everything,” you said softly as you looked at him. “I missed you like crazy, and I knew that it was my fault.”

“You never tried to talk to me or explain yourself,” he replied.

“Yeah, well, I’m not very good at all of this.”

“That’s why I’m here. Because I realized something today.”

“What? That I really am fucked up?”

“Yeah.”

You glared at him, not amused by what you thought might be a joke.

“I mean, I realized why you are the way you are,” he continued, trying to save himself from having just agreeing to the fact that you were fucked up.

“I really don’t need to sit here and listen to another person remind me of what a fuck up I am. I get it, okay?” It was at this moment that you decided to stop holding back. You began to cry again, wondering why this new emotion was so prominent in your life lately.

“You’re not a fuck up,” he continued. “You’re just- kind of damaged.”

“Thanks,” you said sarcastically. “That’s so much better to hear.”

“I think I’m wording what I’m trying to say all wrong,” he muttered. “What I’m saying is, she really messed you up.”

“Yeah. She was a shit mother. Still is. But I don’t use that as an excuse for anything.”

“You know, I didn’t like her the first time I met her. I sort of hated her when you talked about her. I really hate her after today.”

“Why does it even matter? You and I are done. You wouldn’t have to worry about her insulting you if you’d just shut up and let me deal with her, especially now when we’re broken up.”

“That’s the thing, Y/N,” he began. “I don’t care that she insults me, she doesn’t know me. But, I can’t sit back and listen to her talk to you like that. I can’t be okay with seeing her hit you.”

“I’m an adult,” you reminded him. “I can take care of myself.”

“You had a moment when you couldn’t though. You asked me to make her leave. I’ve never seen you look so afraid.”

“Well, you know better than anyone how she gets to me,” you chuckled. “The one mistake that I made was not listening to you when you told me to drop her from my life. Just for the record, even though I said I’d do it because Rob said I should; I didn’t. The one thing that pissed you off enough to leave me, and I didn’t even do it.”

“Because you’re afraid of her.”

“You go through life knowing that your own mother hates you, you learn to stay afraid.”

“So, you really haven’t ditched her? What about that publicist?”

You shook your head in response. It never was the right time to get rid of them. No matter how miserable they had been making your life lately, it never was the right time to stand up to them.

“After you left, I wasn’t as brave anymore. You put the thought into my mind, made me believe that I could be okay without them, and hearing Rob say that it really needed to be done pushed me to finally admit to myself that I couldn’t keep them involved. At some point, it just didn’t matter anymore. I wanted them gone because I wanted to be happy with you and I knew I couldn’t be with them constantly telling me what to do. It just stopped mattering when you left.”

“You didn’t do it because of me?”

“I didn’t say that,” you replied. “I just didn’t do it because nothing mattered as much as being with you. I’m stupid.”

“You’re not stupid,” he argued. He moved toward you and wrapped his arms around you tightly. The movement caught you by surprise, but after a moment, you allowed yourself to rest your head against his chest and just enjoy the moment of having him hold you again. You knew this was going to hurt a lot worse when he walked away from you again, but you seemed to be a glutton for punishment when it came to him. “I never should have walked out on you like that.”

You pulled back from him then, wiping tears from your eyes as you felt the overwhelming need to break down again.

Never had you felt so heartbroken by anything. You didn’t feel like this when you learned that your last relationship had been a lie, not even your own mother had ever made you feel so sad. This was something entirely different. Even though a lot of time had passed since that day that you watched Billy walk out on you, it did not get easier. If anything, it became worse.

“What’s done is done,” you choked out as you turned from him, hoping that you could keep him from seeing you cry again. You hated being weak, and you certainly didn’t want him to know the effect that he still had on you. “I don’t even know why you’re here right now. You’re better off without me. Everyone is.”

“Don’t say that,” he said firmly.

“It’s true,” you replied as you turned to face him again. “I can’t even get my own mother to love me. I certainly don’t expect you to.”

He moved toward you, immediately cupping your face in his hands so that you would look right at him.

“I hate that you feel that you’re undeserving of love.”

“When you’re told all your life that you’re unlovable, it’s hard not to believe it.”

“Y/N,” he sighed as he stepped toward you. He pulled you in for an embrace and you hesitantly accepted it. “You’re not unlovable.”

“I am though,” you replied, tears already rolling down your face. “Or, I’m just not capable of showing love. Whatever it is, I’m messed up. And knowing that I hurt the one person that I ever truly loved is killing me. The fact that I lost you because I’m such a horrible person eats at me every day.”

“I love you,” he muttered as you felt him place a kiss to the top of your head. “I love you so fucking much and I’ve missed you.”

“Please, don’t do this,” you replied as you pushed yourself away from him. No matter how much you wanted to have him here, holding you like this; the fact that he was even acknowledging you hurt. “I’ve been trying so hard to move on, none of this is making it any easier.”

“What would make it easier?” He asked.

“Honestly, me just avoiding you or you going back to pretending that I don’t exist.”

As if on cue, you heard a phone buzz. Billy closed his eyes and let out a sigh before reaching into his pocket. He glanced at his phone and held a hand up to you before he got to work on replying to whatever text message he had been sent. When he was done, he pocketed his phone again and gave you an almost regretful look.

“That was Steve,” he explained. “I gotta get back.”

“Yeah, of course,” you said softly. You averted your eyes to the ground, wishing that he wouldn’t bail on you again. You acted like you didn’t want him around, but you also felt safe with him given everything that had happened. “The show must go on.”

You looked up at him and offered him a forced smile.

“Yeah,” he said in return. “Look, I just wanted to make sure you were okay is all.”

“I’m fine. Really.”

“Maybe we can catch up later, if you’re up for it.”

He waited, looking almost hopeful as you considered his offer. You wanted to jump at the opportunity. You missed him so terribly, and you often wondered if there was ever a possibility that things between the two of you could ever work out again. On the other hand, you had been so horrible to him, you were sure that he would never even speak to you again. Not to mention, just being near him like this also hurt a great deal.

“I don’t know if that’s a good idea,” you replied honestly.

“Y/N,” he let out a frustrated breath, “we should just talk-”

“I think you have somewhere to be,” you cut him off.

Chapter Text

The following day, you woke up; still sore and ego still damaged. You knew you shouldn’t feel ashamed of what had happened, but you did. Your mother’s actions were really the least of your worries right now, you were used to it anyway. Your biggest fear was that you were going to have to face your coworkers after they had all witnessed that entire incident.

There was also the fact that Billy had definitely told you that he still loved you and that he missed you. That was the hardest part for you to comprehend. On one hand, who wouldn’t want to hear those things from the person that they loved? You should be thrilled to hear him say those things again; but you knew that it was too good to be true. Your entire relationship with him had been too good to be true.

As you got ready for the day, taking extra care in covering up the slight bruising to your face, you played out in your mind how you could alleviate the entire thing. It was always best to ignore things like this; and perhaps if you pretended that yesterday never happened, no one would even say anything. Not that you thought anyone would care enough to comment on it. If anything, it would be only Misha and Billy you’d have to avoid.


After stopping to grab a quick coffee, you headed to the convention. You were already nervous before you even made it to the green room and you really just hoped you’d be left alone. Maybe things would be better if they just went back to the way they used to be.

As soon as you entered the room, you felt eyes on you. You kept your head down, not wanting to draw attention to yourself anymore. You could tell what everyone must be thinking today, and you hated that they thought of you this way.

You slinked off to a corner of the room, heart sinking just a bit when you realized that you were definitely reverting back to your old ways. But, you also knew that it was necessary in order to protect your heart.

You avoided eye contact with anyone who was there, pretending to be immersed in something on your phone hoping that you were giving off the ‘leave me alone’ vibe. It was always easy for you to avoid people, you were good at it. Unfortunately for you, it was everyone else who wouldn’t avoid you today.

Kim had been the first to approach you, making a point of letting you know that she was worried about you.

“Hey, Y/N,” she said softly as you looked up at her from your spot on the couch.

“What do you want?” You asked dryly.

“I’m just checking on you.”

“I don’t need anyone to check on me.”

“That was just- some heavy stuff yesterday. Do you need to talk about it?”

“Why would I want to talk about it?”

“It’s nice to have someone to talk to sometimes.”

“Look, I don’t need your concern,” you replied. “And I certainly don’t need to talk about it.”


Throughout the day, the fake concern never stopped. Rob had caught you at one point, offering you an ear if you needed to talk to someone. You had, at one point, had to bite your tongue when Briana pointed out the slightly visible bruising on your cheek. Someone had also asked you if you were sure you were okay enough to continue working the rest of the weekend.

Person after person approached you at some point; either telling you they were sorry for what had happened or letting you know that they were there for you. You knew better though. No one was ever really there for you, especially since they no longer had a reason to be. You wondered why they even bothered at this point. Everyone knew you and Billy were no longer together, so why were they still even talking to you?

You knew these people had only befriended you because they were practically forced to when you and Billy got together. You often wondered when the time would come that they realized you weren’t worth it anymore. All you knew is that you didn’t want to drag this out. If there was one thing you knew for sure, it was that it was best to cut people out of your life immediately. At the same time, you had never let anyone get close to you the way you had with Billy. Even your coworkers had gotten too comfortable and their behavior following the incident with your mom showed that. You couldn’t allow it any more.

The more that people stopped you to check in on you, no matter how hard you worked at avoiding everyone, the more irritated you became. You could feel your anxiety build gradually throughout the day; hating the way everyone looked at you and spoke to you as if you were some damaged child that needed someone to take care of her. You had fought all your life to never be that girl, so the fact that you could tell everyone was thinking it got under your skin.

Since no one was ignoring what had happened, you chose to ignore them instead. It was easy to do. You were still the same cold, stuck-up woman that you had always been; it just took a bit of time to find her again. Once you did, you had no problem in completely blowing everyone off that felt the need to talk to you. In all honesty, it started to feel good knowing that you didn’t have to worry about things like relationships and friends again. The colder you acted toward everyone, the less they approached you.


By the end of the afternoon, you figured you had successfully let people know that you just weren’t interested anymore. It had been a few hours since anyone had tried to hug you or tell you they were there for you. You breathed a little easier knowing that they had most likely finally taken the hint.

You were nearly done with your day when your handler found you, ushering you out of the room to get you to your final responsibility of the day. You felt better knowing that you would be able to disappear to your room afterwards. No one would bother you anymore since they would all be at the concert, and you definitely wouldn’t have to face Billy for the rest of the evening.

Just as you had the thought of him, you caught sight of Billy just as you were being led toward the main room for autographs. You hated that your stomach still flipped each time you saw him, but you couldn’t control if. Maybe someday you would get past it, but today was certainly not that day. You darted your eyes to the ground as you got closer to him, feeling his stare.

Your intent was to walk right past him. You didn’t want to talk to him still for fear of breaking somehow, and you were sure he really didn’t want to speak to you. No matter how easy it was to shut everyone else out, you still felt an ache each time you saw him.

You were surprised however, when he reached out and grabbed your hand as you attempted to move past him. You couldn’t help but to stop; staring down at his hand on yours. You wondered how long it would take for you to stop feeling so broken every time you saw him. All you knew was that you weren’t okay right now. You were holding back the need to cry just by having him touch you.

The only reason you weren’t breaking down was because of everything with your mom. Her usual mantra of telling you to not be weak and to never cry popped into your head, and you couldn’t help but listen to it.

“Hey, Y/N,” he said as he held onto your hand for a moment.

“Hi,” you replied as you quickly and awkwardly removed yourself from his grasp.

“I was hoping we could still talk.”

“Well, I’m sort of busy.”

“I know, but maybe later then.”

“Um, maybe,” you grew nervous, unsure of what it was exactly that he even wanted to talk about. “You know what? Actually, no. I don’t think that’s a good idea.”

“You don’t even want to talk to me anymore?” He asked. You glanced up, making the mistake of making eye contact with him. He looked hurt for some reason, and it only made you feel worse.

“No,” you said bluntly. “It’s just- it would be easier if we didn’t talk.”

“Y/N, none of this is my fault.”

“I know that. Trust me, I take all the blame. Which is why I’m just trying to avoid you.”

“Why are you acting this way?” He said with a sigh.

“This is just how I am,” you replied. “You know that.”

You walked away from him quickly, not even wanting to give him a chance to argue the fact.


By the end of the day, you were tired and just wanted to be left alone. It was exhausting trying to avoid everyone, especially Billy. Even more; you learned how tiring it would be to hold back emotions that you had never had to deal with before.

Maybe it was for the best really. Emotions were messy, and you didn’t have any idea how to deal with them.

When autographs were over, you popped into the green room to get your things and you left the convention, sure that no one had really noticed that you were gone.

By the time you got to your room finally, you were mostly excited to just be alone. You unlocked the door, anxious to change and crawl into bed. Another thing you learned about emotions was that they certainly drained you.

You stepped in your room, turning on on the lights as you discarded your bag near the door. When you looked up, you saw it. Right there, in the middle of the table in the main room, sat a large bouquet of sunflowers. You knew immediately where they had come from and your heart sank when you realized it.

You walked slowly to the table, wondering if you really wanted to know for sure who these were from and why.

You searched the flowers until you found what you really didn’t want to find. Shaking, you took the little note and hesitantly opened it.

‘Because I still think of you, and the thought still makes me happy.’- Billy

You covered your mouth, trying to hold back your sudden sobbing as you read the note scrawled in his handwriting.

You were brought back to the day that he had first sent you flowers on set. For some reason, you had caught his attention then and he never did give up on you even when you insisted that you weren’t interested. Even yesterday, after you had hurt him enough to make him leave in the first place, he still told you he loved you.

You should have been happy to hear those words and to have his attention again. You should be thrilled by the idea of him still caring about you and possibly wanting you back. You weren’t though. None of this made you happy.


You sat on the edge of your bed for a while, just staring at the note in your hand. Your tears had stopped by now, mostly after you talked yourself down. Why you were still allowing him to make you weak, you had no idea. All you knew was that you had to stop. You had to get over him.

You finally moved after talking yourself into it, standing up to place the note in the drawer of the bedside table. You don’t know why you chose to put it there. Maybe if it was out of sight, it wouldn’t affect you so much. The trash would have been easier, but a part of you wasn’t quite that ready to let go.

Just as you closed the drawer, you heard a soft knock at your door. Your heart stopped. Immediately, you assumed it to be Billy. That was the only reason you didn’t ignore it. You headed for the door, shaking again as you looked out the peephole. Just as soon as you got your hopes up for whatever reason, they were quickly squashed by who you saw there. You considered not even answering, but you also knew it wasn’t in this man’s ability to leave things alone. If you didn’t answer now, he’d only bother you even more tomorrow.

“What?” You asked coldly when you finally opened the door.

“Just checking in on you,” Misha smiled briefly before his face dropped into a frown. “Have you been crying?”

“Will people please stop treating me like I’m a child?” You sighed. “I don’t need you to check on me. I don’t need Billy and I don’t need Kim…”

“We’re only checking on you because we care about you.”

“If you cared about me, you’d leave me alone.”

“That’s not caring,” he smiled.

You took a moment to glance around the hallway, making sure that no one was around before you gave in an invited him inside.

“You know, given our history with the tabloids, you really should stop befriending me,” you muttered.

“Too late, we’re already friends.”

“You know what I mean,” you said, rolling your eyes. “What do you want anyway?”

“I was legitimately checking in on you.”

“Well, I’m fine.”

“Are you?” He asked seriously. He narrowed his eyes at you, studying you as he waited for you to break or something.

“Look, if you think that one incident it going to send me into some sort of downward spiral, you’re wrong. I’m fine.”

“You just- didn’t seem fine when it happened.”

“It was mostly shock,” you shrugged.

“I’d be shocked too if my mom hit me like that.”

“I’ve had worse,” you said with a soft chuckle. “I was just shocked that it happened in front of everyone. I don’t know, maybe I was more embarrassed than anything else.”

“I didn’t know,” he said softly. “I mean, I knew she wasn’t mom of the year, but… I didn’t realize.”

“It’s okay,” you replied. “I don’t talk about my relationship with her for a reason. I certainly don’t go around telling everyone what a let down I am that I make my own mom hate me.”

“I don’t know if I should be more concerned about how nonchalant you are about all of this or the fact that you blame yourself.”

“Don’t be concerned,” you said with a forced smile.

“I can’t help it. It’s what I do… worry about people that I care about.”

You smiled at him, realizing that arguing about who and what he should care about wasn’t worth it. He was and always would be a good guy. If he had it in his sights to care about you, even if you weren’t worth the hassle, you couldn’t make him stop caring.

“Well,” you began, changing the subject somewhat, “now that we’ve established that I am just fine, it might be a good idea for you to go before anyone finds another reason to talk about our non-existent relationship.”

“Yeah,” he laughed. “You’re right. I don’t know why people insist that you and I are carrying on some affair… especially when you have a guy like Billy.”

“Had,” you corrected him. “Now that I’m single, people will have even more of a reason to talk.”

“Hmm,” he hummed. “You’re not wrong about that.”

“Will you please leave then?”

“Hey, you invited me in,” he grinned.

You watched him as he wandered further into the room, glancing around the space before taking a seat at the edge of your bed. You stayed put, arms crossed over your chest, questioning him with a look.

“I’m regretting that choice,” you replied.

“How did it go?”

“How did what go?”

“Billy,” he said simply. “Wasn’t he just here?”

“No,” you answered. “I saw him earlier, we talked briefly, and I left. But he was never here.”

“Really?”

“Not that it’s your business, but really.”

“I coulda swore he was on his way to make things right with you when I saw him headed this way.”

“Why does it even matter to you?”

“It just does I guess…”

“You know, I’m just really tired. I’ve had a long day and I’m just- so tired of all of this.”

“You want me to leave?” He asked.

“I never wanted you to show up in the first place,” you said coldly.

Misha looked away from you, turning his lips up into an unamused smirk at your words.

“I was just… checking on you,” he reiterated. “That’s what friends do.”

“I don’t have friends,” you replied.

You watched as his slight grin fell into a frown. Hopefully, now he understood what you were trying to get at.  He stood up silently and made his way toward the door, inviting you to usher him out faster.

“What is it?” He asked as he stopped in place for a moment. “You don’t think anyone actually likes you? Or is it that you just really don’t like anyone else?”

“Misha,” you breathed out, growing more frustrated and upset the longer he stayed. “I just- want to be left alone.”

He simply nodded at you; watching and judging you as you fought hard to hold back tears. You really just wanted to not talk about this and the last thing you needed was for more rumors about the two of you to pop up. You wanted to not be alone with him at all if you could avoid it.

“Alright, Y/N,” he said softly. “I can take a hint.”

“Please,” you begged, still trying to urge him out. “Just go.”

He at least obliged for a moment; only coming to a halt when something caught his eye.

“What are these?” Misha he asked, pointing toward the table.

You let out a sigh, glancing over to see what he was talking about. When you realized what he meant, your heart sank a bit when you saw what he was pointing at.

“They’re flowers, what do they look like?”

Again, you grabbed his arm to lead him to the door, but he quickly wiggled free and walked toward the table.

“I can see that?” He chuckled. “Who are they from?”

Your head was swimming now with how quickly Misha was bouncing around from topic to topic. You truly didn’t get him. You were plainly stating that you didn’t want him here and that you didn’t even think of him as a friend, but it didn’t seem like he was quite getting it.

“Are you always this nosey?” You asked.

“Well, yeah. You know that.”

“They’re from Billy,” you replied, voice raising as your anger started to grow.

“Yeah?” He asked, his brows raised in surprise. You watched as he studied the flowers intently, probably snooping for a note. “It’s an interesting choice. Sunflowers.”

“It is,” you acknowledged. “He’s sent them to me before. Back when he was first trying to date me.”

“Why?”

“I don’t know… they’re supposed to mean happiness or something. He always said they made him think of me when he saw them.”

“That’s… actually kinda sweet.”

“Well, it’s not typical anyway.”

“No. Anyone else would send the usual red roses to the person they love. Sounds like he put actual thought into it.”

“Yeah,” you said softly. “I guess so.”

“So, these are recent?”

“Yeah.”

“What does that mean? You’re really not back together?”

“Not that it’s any of your business, but no.”

“No? Even after he talked to you? Even after the flowers? I’m really confused, Y/N.”

“About what? Billy and I have been split for a while. We still are. It’s pretty easy to understand.”

“Yeah, but he sent you flowers… what did the note say?”

“You just assume there was a note?”

“There’s always a note,” he replied.

You moved across the room without even knowing why you were doing it, retrieving the note from the drawer that you had tossed it in. It wasn’t Misha’s business, and you thought you had made it clear he wasn’t your friend. At this point, you weren’t sure why you were entertaining his questions at all.

You handed him the note and he quickly read it, glancing up at you questioningly.

“Well, that’s just romantic,” he pointed out.

You shrugged in response.

“What? He wasn’t trying to win you back? He didn’t try hard enough? You’re playing hard to get?”

“No, he hasn’t tried to win me back,” you replied. “But, in case you forgot, he left me.”

“No, I remember. You love him, don’t you?”

“What kind of question is that?”

“You’re right. That was a stupid question,” he mumbled. “I have another stupid question.”

“God, what?”

“What’s the problem?”

You stared at him, not really sure of what he was asking exactly. Taking the hint, he realized he had to elaborate.

“Yeah, he left you,” he began. “And now it really sounds like he wants to give you another chance.”

“No he doesn’t…”

“Really? Because I don’t know many people who send flowers to their exes and try to talk to them when they get a chance. So what’s the problem? You love him. He clearly loves you. Why wouldn’t you take that chance?”

“Maybe…” you trailed off, biting your lip as you thought about it. You felt the need to mention to him the talk you and Billy had yesterday. The fact that Billy said that he loved you still and missed you, but never did say that he wanted you back, had been eating at you ever since. A part of you wanted someone else to confirm that you had read that entire thing properly; but in the end, you knew deep down that it couldn’t possibly be his way of fixing things. You weren’t worth the hassle. “Maybe because I don’t deserve another chance, even if he offered.”

“Everyone deserves a second chance.”

“Well, even if I did, there’s so much more to it than that.”

“Well,” he hummed. “You do deserve that chance, and I guess I just don’t understand why you wouldn’t take it.”

“Because!” You cried out, now frustrated. “I don’t want anyone’s pity!”

“Now I’m even more confused.”

“Oh come on,” you sighed. “You think I don’t see the way everyone is looking at me lately? You think I don’t notice the way everyone feels bad for me? I don’t want that. Especially not from him.”

“You think he was trying to get back with you because he feels bad for you?”

“Why else?” You chuckled. “Misha, I fucked that up so bad. The only man that ever treated me like and actual person… the only person who ever actually loved me, and I messed it up. I don’t deserve him. But, I also know that I can’t just keep people around because they pity me.”

It was then that Misha chose to approach you. You didn’t realize it until he embraced you that you were crying.

“You really think it’s because he pities you?” He asked.

“Yes.”

“I sort of doubt that that’s the reason he wants to fix things.”

“He never said he wanted to fix things.”

“What did he say?” He asked curiously.

“You know, he left me,” you reminded him. “Granted, I completely deserved that. But, he left and then he shows up here; telling me that he loves me and he misses me.”

“When?”

“Yesterday. Right after you left. Right after that… thing happened.”

“That’s good,” Misha smiled, looking hopeful. “He does love you and he wanted to be sure you were okay.”

“He either pities me or he’s doing this to hurt me.”

Misha let out a sigh, rolling his eyes at your statement.

“That’s not what it is.”

“Well, I suppose we’ll never know his real intentions.”

“You could if you gave yourself another chance.”

“Please, stop,” you sniffled, pulling yourself away from him. “I am so tired of everything. I don’t want to talk about this anymore.”

“I just- I’m sorry. You two were so good together. He made you happy and I miss seeing you happy.”

“I miss being happy,” you said softly. “But, I sorta got what I deserved.”

“I’m telling you, you need to give it another chance. You’re throwing away something really good just because you think you don’t deserve it for some reason.”

“And because I hate people feeling bad for me.”

“It’s not because he feels bad for you,” he said, matter-of-factually. “Trust me.”

“So, it’s just coincidence that he decided to even talk to me immediately after that whole shit-show with my mom? The fact that he had multiple opportunities to talk to me prior to that just doesn’t matter?”

“Maybe his timing was off…”

“I may not know much about all of this… relationships, love, whatever… but I do know pity when I see it.”

“Still, you should think about it some more.”

“Why are you so interested in my love life?”

“Because you’re my friend. And, I’m team Billy.”

You stared at him as he smiled at you. There it was. The one thing that you didn’t want from anyone. He was treating you exactly the way that you didn’t want to be treated; and even worse, you were foolishly letting him in just enough to get you to open up about your feelings. You realized your mistake now.

“We are not friends,” you choked out angrily. “This is not friendship.”

“Well, now I’m beginning to wonder if you’ve ever had friends before,” he teased.

You knew he was teasing. But, that part of you that had always pushed away possible friends reared its ugly head at his comment. You remembered suddenly why you never did form relationships of any sort in the past.

“Maybe you’re right,” you replied. “I’ve always been on my own. I almost forgot why I chose to be. Thanks for reminding me that I’m better off alone.”

“I didn’t mean anything by it-”

“No. You’re absolutely right. I don’t need anyone. I don’t need Billy, and I certainly don’t need people who are only around because they feel bad for me.”

“That’s not why I’m here.”

“So you don’t feel bad for me?”

“No- I mean, yeah, I guess I do in a way. You let that woman run your life and she’s terrible. No one deserves to be treated like that.”

“You need to find a different charity case, because I’m not it.”

“It’s not charity, Y/N. And it’s not pity. From anyone.”

“That’s exactly what it is,” you replied firmly. “I don’t even know why I’ve told you all of this. I don’t know why I’m listening to you.”

“It’s okay to talk to people, Y/N.”

“No, it’s not,” you spat in return. “She always told me that people were only going to hurt me. I should have listened to her.”

“Who? Your mother?” He asked in surprise.

“She was always looking out for me. Of course the one time I don’t listen to her, and I end up here.”

“Oh sweetie,” he said, shaking his head as he looked at you in concern. “You are so confused.”

You felt your face heat up in anger as he said it. You stepped back as he moved toward you, holding his arms out as if he wanted to hold you again.

“The only thing I’m confused about is why you are still here,” you said coldly.

Even Misha could take a hint. He held back on trying to calm you now. He gave you a look as if to tell you that he was giving up. He averted his eyes from your stare, turning from you and heading for the door finally. He said nothing else and neither did you. You watched the door shut behind him, giving it a few minutes to be sure he was gone for real. When you thought that you were in the clear, you let yourself cry again; allowing the tears to come at full force as your body shook with each sob.

You knew you weren’t allowed to be so emotional, and you had every intention of making sure that you went back to ignoring your emotions; but for now, you figured no one was around to degrade you for feeling things, you might as well let it out one last time.

Chapter Text

The last person you wanted to hear from when you woke up was your publicist. Not only were you still upset by your mother’s behavior the other day, but you still weren’t pleased with Jen for the fact that she was probably still so close to your mom.

The two of them had been making your life hell lately, but even now you couldn’t find it in yourself to cut yourself loose from them. If nothing else, they were the last two people on earth that were still by your side. You weren’t sure if that was even a good thing.

Knowing that she’d annoy you all day if you didn’t answer her call, you decided it was best to see what she wanted.

“Y/N,” she greeted you cheerfully when you answered.

“What do you want?” You asked, not really in the mood to play nice.

“Well, I come with good news.”

“How good could any news coming from you really be?” You asked spitefully.

“I guess I’ll let you decide,” she chuckled. “You’ve been offered a role in a movie.”

She rambled on, telling you more information; the name, the premise, the costar, the director… By the time she was done filling you in, it all sounded nice enough. Really, it sounded like something any actress would dream of being a part of.

“I never auditioned for a movie,” you said with a frown.

“I know that. You didn’t have to. They’ve just been interested in working with you. In case you forgot, you actually had a very promising career at one point.”

You took a moment to let it sink in. At one point in your life, this definitely would have been great news. Your career hadn’t been going so well lately, not since the entire debacle that plastered your name and face all over every magazine and website letting people in on how much of a screw up you were. Supernatural had been your first big gig since then and even that was just an attempt to clean up your image. You had never wanted to be on the show, much less be contracted in the convention circuit, but you took it at the time just so you could have some sort of work going on.

After a while, you had thought that being on the show had turned into a good thing. For a brief period of time, you had been happy. Now, you sort of felt like remaining here was just as bad as you originally thought it to be.

“Wow, this is… great news,” you mumbled in return, not really sure why you didn’t feel more excited about it.

“This is huge for you. So, I’ll get back into contact with the studio and let them know you’re interested.”

“But I’m already under contract with Supernatural,” you pointed out.

“Just for the rest of the season. You can finish up and it will be right on time for this project.”

“Yeah, but I also heard that there was the possibility they’d want to keep me on for next season.”

“Well, rumors are just rumors,” Jen argued. “Besides, the whole point of doing this show was to get you back out there. You’re getting attention again. This is a big opportunity. This is a big movie, with a big star, Y/N.”

“Well, yeah, I know that. There’s also the convention stuff. Even if they don’t ask me to come back next season, I’m still sort of under contract for the next year at conventions.”

“The contract for you is fairly lenient. I’m sure it will be easy to step away from.”

“Yeah, but you know I hate to let fans down,” you argued.

“I sort of feel like you are arguing this because you don’t want to leave the show.”

You paused, realizing that you were definitely arguing against doing this film. It’s not that you wanted to stay on the show, or that you even enjoyed being at the conventions. Whether or not you let anyone down really never mattered to you before. You weren’t sure why you felt so apprehensive right now. But, a part of you just wasn’t as excited as you probably should be.

“That’s not it.”

“Really? Because it seems like you’re making excuses as to why you can’t do this movie.”

“Maybe I really just don’t want to do the movie.”

“Are you out of your mind?” Jen asked. “You hated the idea of doing the show in the first place. It was only a career move meant to get you some positive attention. Now, you’ve gotten some positive attention; enough to make important people take notice anyway.”

“Yeah, I just- I don’t know if I’m ready for that.”

“You want to stay where you are? What do you even have left for you there?”

That one stung. You bit your tongue, knowing that you really didn’t want to fight anymore. You had spent a lot of time fighting with her and your mom ever since Billy came into the picture. Now, you were just tired. Perhaps it would just be easier on you to continue to let them make decisions for you, go back to the way things had been before they got so complicated. You were good at being complacent. Even if you had definitely gone through your rebellious phase briefly as you fought them on dating Billy, you knew now that it couldn’t last.

There had to come a time when you just gave up. You never were very good at being independent.

“You’re right,” you said softly. “I guess there isn’t anything here for me anymore.”

“Won’t you be happier when you move on?” She asked, almost sounding sympathetic. “I get that it was fun for a while, but everything has to end. We worked hard to get you seen again. We cleaned you up and you did well in keeping your life mostly drama free. You’ve earned this.”

“I guess you’re right,” you replied.

In the back of your mind, you were screaming at yourself. No one had worked hard in cleaning up your life and making it drama free. Jen and your mom had worked hard in stifling you and telling you what to do. They had made careers out of controlling your life, and they weren’t letting up any time soon.

“So, I can talk to them and let them know you’re interested?”

You held your breath, wondering if it really was even your choice that mattered. All you knew was that you really didn’t want to take the offer. But, you also knew that it didn’t matter.

“I might be interested,” you lied. “We’ll talk.”

“Great,” she said, enthusiasm present in her voice. “This will be so good for you. You’re well on your way to being happy finally now that we can get you out of this job that you never really wanted in the first place.”

You hummed your approval before hanging up, not wanting to draw the conversation out any longer since you feared you might actually tell her what you were really thinking about the whole thing.

As you got ready for the day, you couldn’t shake away the aching feeling growing in your stomach.

You should have been thrilled. You should be feeling like you were on cloud nine right now. But you didn’t feel that way at all. This was a huge opportunity, one that you had worked so hard to earn. You had done what you were supposed to do in order to show people that you weren’t a screw up. You had done exactly what you had been advised to do. You endured a long “relationship” with someone who had been paid to be with you, and you had dealt with all of the humiliation that came along with it.

Now, it seemed as if the big talent in the industry had finally realized that you weren’t a screw up. You could be trusted again. Everything in your past had been basically forgotten.

Still, you weren’t at all happy about this news. Even as Jen insisted that you’d now be on your way to being happy, you knew that was a lie.

There had only been one period of time in the entirety of your life where you ever actually felt happiness. Real, honest, all-consuming happiness. Even though that seemed like a lost cause at this point, you knew that leaving all of this behind wasn’t going to create instant happiness.

Billy had been the only person to ever make you feel that. When you had been with him, you felt safe and loved. Even after you ruined all of that, he still had a way of somehow making you feel that he cared for you. You figured walking away from all of this would only make your unhappiness worse since you would be distancing yourself from him even more.

Even if you knew that he was going out of his way to check on you out of pity, you couldn’t help but think that maybe it wasn’t so bad that way.

Suddenly, your mind replayed the way that he had told you that he missed you and loved you. Still, it was out of pity. That fact sort of irritated you. You wondered if having him and everyone else you had grown to know and like here, pity you, would be better than reverting back to the person that you used to be. Then again, you knew it wouldn’t be that difficult to return to that girl. As a matter of fact, you had already started down that road.


The day was fairly quiet. Even Misha seemed to have given up on you. You wanted to tell yourself that you were happy about that; you were used to people giving up on you; but you only felt a growing sadness at the way people avoided you.

You kept the thought in your mind that this was the last day for this con. All you had to do was make it through today then you could go home. You could have a few days off before you had to return to set, and you looked forward to it.

You were in between photo ops and panels, sitting quietly in the green room when Kim approached you out of the blue. Mostly everyone had left you alone today, but you knew that it wouldn’t last long. She had just been the last person you expected to make conversation.

“How are you?” She asked as she offered you an almost sympathetic smile.

You really didn’t want this. You hated sympathy… or pity as you knew it was. It seemed that almost everyone around here pitied you and the idea of it left a bad taste in your mouth.

You had worked way too hard to make sure that no one ever made you feel this way, and it seemed to be a popular thing this weekend.

“I already told you that I’m fine,” you mumbled in return.

“That’s good to hear.”

“Really, please don’t do this. I’m not as damaged as you all think I am. I just want everyone to leave me alone.”

“Do you know what I love about you?” She asked suddenly as she seemingly wanted to change the subject even though she had started on it.

You raised a brow at her, not really sure if you were thrown off by the fact that she was still talking to you after everything or if it was the use of that dreaded word. Either way, you didn’t respond. You weren’t sure that you even wanted to hear more.

“Your strength,” she said simply.

“Right,” you huffed out in response. “You don’t have to be so sarcastic about it.”

“It’s not sarcasm. It’s the truth.”

You studied her, trying to figure out if she was indeed mocking you or if maybe you were just taking it the wrong way. When you didn’t reply, she took that as her cue to continue.

“Look, I don’t know details about your past or your relationship with your mother… but, that was pretty heavy stuff the other day…”

“I’m sorry,” you said finally. “I never meant for any of you to have to be involved in something like that.”

“You apologize a lot for her, don’t you?”

“No. I’m just apologizing for dragging everyone into this.”

“You didn’t though…”

“Why are you still talking to me?” You sighed.

You weren’t sure if if you were actually annoyed with her talking to you, or if it was just the fact that she was dredging up stuff that you wanted to forget. It all used to be so easy. You were a pro at pushing back back memories. You could always very easily move on from things that upset you. Being here, with Kim and everyone else, made it a lot harder for you to do that.

“You haven’t given anyone the chance to really check on you.”

“I don’t need anyone to check on me,” you said. “Why is everyone here so intent on checking on me? I’m an adult who can take care of herself.”

“I didn’t say you couldn’t take care of yourself. It’s just- Misha talked to me… he thought it might be better if I tried to talk to you.”

You rolled your eyes, sighing heavily.

“Why does anyone even care? I appreciate that you were all at least pretending to be nice to me when I was with Billy, but it doesn’t matter anymore. You don’t have to act like you care now.”

“Just because you’re not together anymore, doesn’t mean that anyone stops caring about you.”

“No one cared about me before.”

“You never gave anyone the chance to care.”

“Well, that was my own stupid fault. I let my guard down for just a moment… thinking that I could actually have something real, and it’s gotten me nowhere. I was much better of when I had no one.”

“I can’t imagine that a life alone makes you better off.”

“See, this is the point where I remind you that you don’t know me,” you said bitterly.

“I know you a little. And I know that you’re really bothered by everything that’s happened.”

“The only thing bothering me, is you.”

You definitely noticed the way she pulled back at your words; her face contorting ever so slightly into a look of frustration. You didn’t want to be mean. God knows, she didn’t deserve it. No one here did. But you knew the best way to keep people out of your life was to treat them poorly. No one wanted to have much to do with a snobby, mean bitch like you.

“I get it,” she said finally. “First the whole Billy thing… then the embarrassment of what your mom did… you’re really good at shutting people out when you’re hurting.”

“I’m not hurting. I’m just- annoyed. I don’t understand why everyone thinks it’s necessary to tell me how I’m feeling. I don’t understand why he’s even talking to me.”

“Billy?”

“I mean, I do understand. It’s pity. He feels bad for me, just like the rest of you do. Either way, I don’t want it. I’m not hurting. I’m just- done.”

“Regardless of what you think, we still care about you. All of us do.”

“Yeah, like I said, pity.”

“That’s not-“

“Really, Kim,” you sighed. “You don’t have to pretend anymore. It’s fine. I didn’t expect anyone to still try with me after everything anyway.”

“I’m not going anywhere,” she said softly. “I get that you’re working really hard at pushing people away again, but I’m way too invested now.”

“Why? Why won’t you just give up on me?”

“Because, I’ve already caught a small glimpse of who you really are, and I like her. She’s a great woman. This…” she began, motioning to you, “this is not who you are.”

“I’m sorry to disappoint, but this is what I’ve always been.”

“This is what you are when you’re scared. Now… when you had something that was real and actually made you happy… that was the real you.”

“It was short-lived,” you responded. “Besides, you don’t know me enough to have an opinion.”

“Maybe you’re right… but, I like to think that you let the rest of us get to know you a lot more than anyone else ever really has.”

“I was just- being nice to my boyfriend’s friends.”

“Really?” She smirked. “Is that all it was? Because there was a point when you came to me and the girls for advice… really- uh, intimate advice.”

“Are you making fun of me?” You spat in return.

You felt your face heat up as you relived the embarrassment of having gone to them in the first place with all of that. Although it had been the first time when you really felt that you could have actual friends, and they had been really kind and helpful; it was still embarrassing.

“Not making fun of you,” she said. “Just reminding you that you do have people who actually care about you.”

“She’s my mother,” you said as you forced back tears. She didn’t have to specify what she meant by her statement, but you knew. For so long you had a few people who would remind you that perhaps she didn’t love you. For some reason, that hurt more than anything. “Am I not supposed to love her just because she doesn’t love me the way that everyone thinks she should.?”

“Even the people we love aren’t always right. And sometimes they hurt us. We don’t have to stop loving them, but we also don’t have to let them hurt us.”

“I never really realized how many people pity me because of her,” you chuckled.

“Oh, Y/N… “ she said softly. “You’re so confused…”

Again, there it was. Another one of your pseudo-friends calling you confused. It made you angry to hear it again.

“I am not confused. I’m realistic.”

“It’s not pity,” she argued. “It’s just love.”

“You use that word a lot,” you chuckled. “You shouldn’t throw it around.”

“It’s a good word,” she smiled. “I like to use it as often as I can.”

“Not me.”

“How often have you heard it directed at you?” She asked.

You hesitated; not really wanting to answer… but you still paused to think about it. You thought back as far as you could. You thought back to the very few people who actually had any part in your life. You thought about how many of those people ever actually said those words to you.

“This is stupid,” you said finally, tears welling up in your eyes.

You internally kicked yourself. Why did you have to let this stupid question make you emotional? What did it even matter how many people in your life ever used those words? Your mom had told you early on that no one could ever love you. You learned to accept it. Besides, love only made you weak. If you had learned nothing else from your relationship with Billy, you did learn that much.

“I apologize for upsetting you…”

“She has said that she loves me, by the way,” you referred to your mother because you knew that’s what she was talking about. The biggest form of pity everyone seemed to be giving you was over the fact that they could all see how much the woman hated you, and that was something that humiliated you beyond anything else. “Plenty of times.”

“Has she? I mean, I heard her sort of say it the other day. Something about how she’s the only one who really loves you… that she treats you the way that she does out of love…”

You swallowed hard, still trying to think back. Truthfully, the only times you ever heard her say those words was when she was berating you for something. They usually came along with a conversation about how you had no one else in your life and anyone you let in was only using you. Usually, you’d hear it when she was defending her treatment of you to other people. You realized quickly that she had never directly said it to you in a loving context.

“You said it,” you pointed out. “Just now. You said it to me.”

Kim smiled softly at you, reaching out to take your hand in hers.

“Yeah, and I meant it. I know we’re not besties or anything, but I have come to know you. What I’ve seen in you, I love.”

“My strength apparently?” You laughed.

“Yeah, that’s part of it.”

“I get it. Not everyone can take a hit like me.”

She looked at you for an uncomfortable amount of time, silent as she let your words sink in. Of course you had made it weird by making a joke about your mother hitting you.

“That’s not what I-“

“You know, he’s the only other person to tell me that he loved me,” you cut her off. “The first time he said it… that was the first time I had ever really heard it… from anyone.”

You didn’t focus so much on holding back now. The tears that you had been fighting built up, finally breaking free as you spoke to her.

“I’m sorry…”

“You know, I’m not angry with him,” you continued as you forced yourself to stop crying.

You reached up and wiped tears away with the back of your hand. Honestly, you were confused as to why you were letting this all out right now. You should have been focused on shutting her out again, shutting the world out… but, it was word vomit at this point. You couldn’t make yourself stop.

“You act like you are. You act like you’re angry at him and the rest of us… you act like you’re angry at the world again.”

“I know. I’m not though.”

“I get that you’re mad at your mom, she did a really terrible thing. And your publicist… whoever else you have controlling your life. But, you can’t take that out on other people. It just makes you miserable.”

“I’m not angry at them either.”

“I would be.”

“I’m angry at myself,” you breathed out.

“You’re taking all of that… and blaming yourself?” She asked.

“It’s all my fault. Everything… if I had just been better to Billy, I would be happy. If I had been a better daughter…”

“Stop right there,” she said firmly, cutting you off. “How she chooses to treat you, isn’t your fault. Don’t ever believe that it’s your fault. Because I’ve heard enough about how she is and that’s not your fault. As for Billy… yeah, you kinda fucked up there.”

“Thanks,” you said sarcastically.

“But, I also know that he’s been trying to get you to listen to him again. He wants to talk to you. You just won’t let him.”

“It’s easier,” you replied. “Isn’t it? Isn’t it better to just- not be a part of things that can hurt you?”

“Maybe you’re right,” she said. “But then again, why are you sticking up for the woman who’s hurt you your entire life?”

“I guess- I’m just not as strong as you think I am.”

“See, I think that’s not true.”

“My entire personality…” you began. “The stuck up, too-good-for-anyone, keep to myself girl… that’s always been the way I’ve handled people. I learned a long time ago to how to keep people out. It’s not strength, it’s just- a coping mechanism.”

“That’s not what I’m talking about when I talk about strength. I meant the way that you allowed some of us in for a brief time despite everything. The way you love Billy even though you’ve been hurt so much. The fact that you have it in you to still love people… that’s strength.”

You allowed her words to sink in. No one had ever said anything like this to you before, and it was sort of eye-opening to actually hear it.

“You say that you think I’m strong,” you began, “then why do I feel so… broken?”

“Because you are,” she replied honestly. “That doesn’t mean that it’s your fault or that you’re not strong. It just means that you’re human.”

“Thank you. No one has ever told me that before.”

“I figured you needed to hear it. And, I’m here to remind you anytime you need to hear it.”

You let out a long sigh and leaned back in your seat. It was a lot to take in. It was also everything that you had ever needed to hear.

You glanced over to Kim and she took that as her cue to sit back next to you. She put her arm around you and pulled you in to her. This time, you didn’t try to escape the physical contact. You actually really needed it.

“You know,” Kim said quietly as the two of you sat there. “There’s at least one more person around here who probably has a lot to say to you in regards to all of this.”

“Yeah, you’re right.”

“Maybe you should listen to him.”

“Maybe I will,” you replied. “Do you know where Misha is?”

She shot you a glance as if to ask if you had misunderstood what she really meant.

“He’s doing photo ops right now I think. But, that’s not who I was talking about…”

“I know who you were talking about,” you chuckled. “I don’t know if I’m ready for that yet. But, I do owe Misha an apology first.”

“Well, good. It’s good to apologize when you’re wrong. I think that’s a great first step. But I really, really think you need to talk to Billy.”

You stood up from your seat, carefully pulling yourself away from her. Yes, talking to Billy had been on your mind for a long time. You missed him. You wanted to fix the things that you had broken. It was a lot easier said than done though. You knew Kim meant well, and you knew that she was right. If anyone around here deserved anything from you, it was Billy.

You still couldn’t get it out of your head that perhaps it was far too late for that though. You had convinced yourself that you didn’t deserve him. He was a good man who should be with someone who could love him the way that he deserved to be loved. That person wasn’t you. Not when you were this broken. Not when you still had your life and your thoughts controlled, not when your decisions were still being made for you by other people.

“I’ll keep that in mind,” you replied. “Thanks again.”

“Anytime,” Kim said with a smile.

You could see the instant look of disappointment on her face as you walked away from her. You knew you weren’t going to talk to Billy; and you had a sinking feeling that she knew the same thing.

Chapter Text

You had tracked Misha down later on just as you intended to do.

For some reason, that conversation with Kim had affected you, even if you didn’t want to admit it. You were never one to take advice from anyone, mostly because that meant that you actually valued people’s opinions. Also, the fact that she was even willing to talk about those things with you sort of meant that you might actually have real friends. That in itself was always a terrifying concept for you to grasp.

You had learned a long time ago not to care about people, but certain people here had definitely changed many of your beliefs.

He was hanging out in the green room, chatting with Briana when you did find him. You considered waiting to talk to him until she was gone, but you also knew your schedule left you with limited time. So, you decided that it was best to just get the apology out of the way even if you had an audience.

“Hey, I just wanted to apologize,” you began when you approached him. He and Briana looked up at you from their spots on the couch and you stood anxiously in front of them.

“For what?” Misha asked, looking confused.

“For the way I treated you yesterday. You were being a good friend and checking in on me and I completely blew you off. I shouldn’t have said the things that I did. And I’m sorry for that.”

“It’s nothing Y/N. I get it, really I do.”

“Kim talked some sense into me. I realize that I’m not very good at having friends… and I don’t really know how to let people in. But, I do appreciate the way you look out for me. I’ll try to be better because I really don’t want to be alone, even if I make it seem like I do.”

“Good,” he smiled. “Because you do have friends and we do care about you. Have you talked to Billy yet?”

“I got offered a movie role,” you said, completely trying to avoid his question now. “It’s a huge opportunity. I get to work with a big director and an even bigger actor. I didn’t even have to audition, they actually wanted me.”

“That’s great,” Misha smiled. “That’s all you ever really wanted, right?”

“Yeah, I just wanted to get my old life back.”

“Well, I guess you can have that now. You can finally leave the show, the conventions that you’ve always hated doing anyway…”

“Yeah,” you mumbled.

“When does that start?” Briana asked.

“I haven’t actually said yes yet.”

“Really?” Misha asked. He turned his face up into an expression of mock surprise and you couldn’t help but laugh at him. “And why not? I thought you were waiting for the moment when you could be done with all of this.”

“I’m not…” you hesitated, not sure of how to really put into words at the moment.

You were damn good at acting as if none of this mattered to you. You could easily push people away and pretend as if personal relationships weren’t important, but deep down you knew that you had changed.

“So, you’re having doubts about taking this once in a lifetime role that has been offered up to you? I mean, you didn’t even have to audition, Y/N. Opportunities like this don’t just happen to people.”

“I get the feeling that you’re trying to say something here without actually saying it.”

“I’m not saying anything, Y/N,” he smiled.

“You think that my people got me this role,” you replied. “Obviously I didn’t do anything to earn it, so someone had to have pulled some strings.”

“I didn’t say that. But, you’re obviously thinking it. Why is that?”

“Because… it wouldn’t be the first time my mother pulled some strings on my behalf.”

“I mean, either way, you have been offered this really great role. You’d be stupid not to take it, regardless of how you got it.”

“I didn’t earn it,” you muttered.

You had been thinking it the entire time. It was strange that you suddenly got this ‘offer’ without actually doing any work for it. Honestly, you just wanted to have someone else verify your thoughts in this as well. You mostly wanted someone else to tell you that you weren’t completely crazy about what your were thinking about all of this.

“Does that really matter?”

“To me, it does. Besides, I’m still on the show and contracted for conventions…”

“I thought you hated all of this.”

“I don’t hate it,” you replied.

“Really?”

“I mean, all of this isn’t so bad…”

“Well, I suppose you have warmed up to this life and us,” Briana smiled.

“This is the first time that I’ve ever had anything like friends.”

“Wow, you actually admit that you have friends now? We’ve been trying to tell you that for months.”

“I know I’ve been really horrible. It’s just… hard for me to accept that people might care about me a little bit.”

“Understandable,” she said.

“Besides, maybe I have grown to actually like being on the show. Maybe I’m waiting to see if they keep my character on for a little longer. Also, the conventions are actually a lot of fun. They’re how I get to meet fans, get to know the rest of the cast better… Until recently, I actually felt really safe here with all of you.”

“They’re also how you get to spend time with Billy?” Misha added.

“Well, used to anyway.”

“You really should talk to him,” he urged.

“I don’t know if I can apologize to him again,” you replied. “It hurts to even be near him still.”

“I’m not talking about an apology. You’ve already done that. I’m talking about the two of you sitting down to actually work on your relationship.”

“There is no-”

“That’s crap,” he cut in. “You’re telling me that he just sends you flowers and sappy notes because he feels bad for you?”

You shrugged in return. That had been your thought all along honestly. You were sure he was doing all of that because he pitied you.

“That’s not what it is,” he insisted. “He loves you. He never stopped loving you.”

“He also doesn’t need someone who just screws everything up. He deserves better than that.”

“A real apology goes a long way,” Briana cut in.

You glanced at her, having almost forgotten that she was there.

“I mean, I really think all he needed was an apology. He just wanted to know that you appreciate him.”

“I know that.” You said. “I did apologize… and we have talked a little bit…”

“He sent her flowers,” Misha pointed out as he grinned at Briana. “And a love note.”

“Really? When?” She asked.

“Yesterday…”

“Well, that’s good,” she beamed.

“He’s been trying to talk to me,” you added.

“Then what’s the problem? That’s a good sign.”

“Y/N here is avoiding him,” Misha explained. “Billy very much wants to talk to her and fix things. He even told her that he still loves her and that he misses her. You should’ve read the little note he sent. It was disgusting.”

“Why are you avoiding him?” Briana asked.

You opened your mouth to speak, but before you could get a word out, Misha was speaking up for you again.

“Because she thinks he’s being nice to her out of pity. She’s sure that he just feels bad, especially after the whole thing with her mom the other day; so he’s taking pity on her.”

“What?” Briana asked in disbelief.

“Can I speak for myself?” You asked with a hint of annoyance in your voice. You turned your attention to Bri, hoping to explain things a little better. “It’s true. He feel bad. He knows better than anyone how my mom is, and all of that… it just made him feel bad for me. I appreciate that people care, but I refuse to be a pity case.”

“Oh, girl…” she sighed in return. “You are so confused…”

“Why does everyone keep saying that?”

“It’s not pity,” she continued. “He loves you. After he left you, the rest of us had to deal with him moping around, wondering out loud if he had made the wrong decision. He was hurt by the way you treated him, but he couldn’t help but think that he had made a mistake. When he went to you to try to fix things, and you just shot him down again and again… it destroyed him. I’ve never seen him so torn up over anything before.”

“Really? I’m the one who hurt him, and he felt terrible for the way things went?”

“He made a mistake leaving you,” she said softly. “He knew it. He knew that you just didn’t know how to be in a relationship and he wished that the two of you had talked about it instead of him walking out. That’s the only reason he kept trying to talk to you.”

You shook your head in response, still not sure if you could believe all of this. You knew that you had hurt him, and he had been so angry with you when he walked out. You never did blame him for that.

It’s true that you didn’t know how to act with someone that you loved; love was a new experience for you. You never meant to hurt him, but you also knew that someone like him really did deserve someone who knew what they were doing. He needed someone who could love him properly. You certainly weren’t that person given the way you had been so deprived of love your entire life. You honestly didn’t know if you would ever be capable of real love.

You stood in silence for some time, unsure of what to say anymore. By this point, a part of you still felt the need to protect yourself. You weren’t sure if it was safe to listen to everyone who kept telling you that you were wrong about Billy. But a small part of you did believe them. Maybe it wasn’t a pity thing after all. It was pretty clear that most of your friends here didn’t pity you the way that you thought they did, maybe Billy was no different. Maybe people really did care about you and you just didn’t know how to accept that.

“I’m not saying this because I think you’re damaged and pathetic,” Misha began. “Quite the opposite in fact… but you need him.”

“I think he needs you too,” Briana added.

“That’s a weakness,” you mumbled in response. You stared at the floor, now unwilling to make eye contact with anyone as your mother’s words left your lips. “Needing other people… that’s just being weak.”

“That’s not true,” Briana said defensively.

You looked up at her now, hearing the change in her tone. She seemed upset, almost angry as she stopped you.

“Caring about people… needing other people is a brave thing. Loving people is brave. Don’t let her stay in your head with that crap.”

“Look,” Misha began, now trying to ease the tenseness of the situation as it appeared that what you said really upset Briana. “You don’t have to live by her words anymore. You’re an adult who is perfectly capable of taking care of herself. You spent a lot of time keeping her away from you, you can still do that.”

“She’s toxic,” Briana added. “All of these things that you say… that’s her, it’s not you. I know that you don’t believe any of that.”

“What are you trying to say?” You asked.

“You cut her out of your life once before,” Misha said. “And look what happened… you found Billy and you were happy with him.”

“And then she came back into your life…” Briana trailed off, leaving you to finish her thought.

You got it almost instantly. It really all made sense now. Once she came back, things got bad. Your relationship with Billy suffered, your friendships suffered, your own peace of mind suffered. You wondered now if things would have gone differently if she had just stayed away.

Now you understood. Your relationship with him didn’t end because you had necessarily ruined it. It ended because your own mother failed to teach you what love was. Everything that you had ever missed out on in life and everything that you had lost was because of her. You hated to blame anyone for the way you were, but maybe it was time to place a little bit of the blame that you held onto somewhere else.

“You’re right,” you said softly. “You’re both right.”

“You should do something about this,” Briana replied. “You can fix things. Mistakes are almost always forgivable.”

“I do have to fix things,” you said firmly. “Thank you.”

You turned from the two of them, taking in all that they had said. Your head dizzied with thoughts. There was so much to think about. Apparently there was always the possibility that you could still be with Billy. You wanted that. You wanted those feelings of safety and love again.

The only problem was that you knew you could never have any of that again with someone unless you found the courage to do something that you should have done years ago. Although you played tough, you were afraid of your mother. That’s the only reason you blindly accepted the fact that she remained a part of your life even when you thought that she was not involved.

By the time you made it back to your room at the end of the day, you were seething. All day you had thought about the ways that she had treated you and how that treatment had messed you up in return. You began to blame her for everything. You blamed her for how cold and unfeeling you were. You blamed her for ruining things with Billy. You also blamed her for trying to ruin more with this stupid film offer that you never wanted in the first place.  

You had stupidly never considered what all of this could be until Misha had brought it up. You felt like a bigger idiot than usual, especially since he had basically indicated that there was no way you could have even earned this role.

You knew that you had to call the one person that you really didn’t want to call. Jen would be of no help, not when it came to your mother’s behavior. You had to talk to her yourself.

The thought of it terrified you. Your last interaction with her had been enough to make you completely shut down. If she had no problem treating you like that in front of other people, there was no telling what else she could be capable of.

Still, you kept Misha and Briana’s words in the back of your mind as you sat on your hotel bed, trying to talk yourself into doing what you knew you needed to do. Pretty soon, Kim’s words also crept in.

For the first time in… ever, you felt yourself relax as you replayed the kind words of your friends in your head. Yes, you had friends. You had accepted that some time ago, and regardless of how you had acted lately, you knew that you still had them.

The knowledge that you had people who truly cared about you even if you were a mess made you feel a little less broken. They had no reason to lie to you. Even if you often tried to convince yourself that they were messing with you or pitying you when they checked in on you or talked with you, you knew that they wouldn’t waste their time if they didn’t really care.

You took a deep breath and closed your eyes. For the first time in a while, you felt a sense of calmness wash over you. There was something that you needed to do, and perhaps this was the time when you could actually do it.

You reached for your phone and shakily pulled up your mom’s number. You hesitated only for a moment before you hit the call button. You swear you stopped breathing while you listened to the phone ring.

“What did you do?” You asked the second she answered your call. You gave her no time to speak first, just went right into berating her before she had a chance to scare you out of this.

“Well, hello to you too,” she answered in return.

“I didn’t call you for a friendly chat,” you said nervously. “I want to know what you did.”

“What are you on about?”

“Jen called earlier with the fantastic news that I got offered a role. No audition, no meeting… just- they offered it up to me.”

“Yes, I’m aware of this news,” she replied with an annoyed sigh.

“What did you do?”

“Why do you just assume-?”

“Because I know how you are!” You shouted angrily. Now you were upset. You felt your face heat up in anger and you no longer felt afraid, just angry. “I know how you and Jen work.”

“It doesn’t matter what I did,” she explained. “All that matters is that I was willing to do anything for you.”

“You either paid or bribed someone to get me this part,” you spat. “And worse, you obviously did it with my money.”

“I was only trying to help.”

“How?” You shouted. Now you weren’t just angry, but you were embarrassed. You felt yourself crying as you finally lost your cool with her over how she continued to control your life. “You tried to help by bribing people into working with me?”

“Well, you weren’t supposed to find out. Just like you were never supposed to find out about that set up all those years ago.”

“How can you keep doing this to me?” You asked. You knew how upset you sounded. You didn’t want to give her the satisfaction of knowing that she upset you this much, but you couldn’t hold it back.

“Since you’ve forgiven me for the other day, I think it’s probably best if we sit down and talk about this face to face. I get that you’re offended that you weren’t actually considered based on your talent, but you need this role.”

“You think I’ve forgiven you?”

“I’m just trying to get you out of there,” she replied, ignoring your question. “I know you didn’t want that job in the first place. You hate it there. Not to mention the fact that you’re constantly around that man that broke your heart… it’s a bad place for you.”

“You’re not helping me. You’re constantly making things worse. You’re trying to control my life and I’m done.”

“Done with what?”

“I’m done,” you breathed out. You felt tears fall down your cheeks, but a strange sense of calm washed over you as you said those words finally. “I don’t need you anymore. I never needed you. I’m done with you and I’m done with Jen and anyone else who works for me.”

“You’re firing all of us?” She chuckled, as if your words were amusing.

“Yes, I am.”

“You can’t do that.”

“I just did.”

“Who’s going to handle your career? Who’s going to take care of you?”

Her words were biting and almost condescending. It was as if she truly didn’t think you could be on your own. In that moment, you understood that she treated you the way she did because she needed to have control over you. She needed to control something and she had managed to beat you down for so long that she had absolute control over your life. You also knew that this was ending now.

“I am.”

She let out a laugh, causing your anger to grown even more.

“This is because of him,” she said. “He’s still in your head.”

You didn’t even have to clarify. You knew who she was talking about.

“No, this isn’t because of him. This is something I should have done a long time ago.”

Chapter Text

You left the convention with a sense of pride in yourself. You had at least fixed your relationships with the people who had become your friends, and you had successfully and bravely weeded out the most toxic people in your life.

You returned to set in Vancouver with an unfamiliar sense of accomplishment for once. Even when your mother and even Jen had tried to talk you out of letting them go, you stood your ground on the decision. This didn’t stop them from berating you and telling you that you’d fail without them, but you really didn’t care anymore. So what if you might make a mess of your career by letting them go? The inner peace you felt about all of this was enough to convince you that you had definitely done the right thing.

Your co-workers noticed the kick in your step when you all returned to work. They pointed out how you seemed happier, and you really did feel happier.

However, there was one thing that still bothered you. You tried not to let it show anymore that you were still a mess over the entire thing with Billy. Regardless of how your new-found freedom had you smiling, the thoughts of him still hurt.

You thought often about the way Misha, Briana, and Kim had tried to convince you that perhaps Billy really did want to try a relationship with you again. Your insistence that he was only speaking to you at all because he felt bad for you remained though. You kept telling yourself that it was pity; to the point where you continued to believe it.

As you worked through the week, this continued to weigh on you. You questioned yourself and every choice that you had made. You questioned whether you were wrong about everything when it came to him.

By the end of the week, your pride in yourself over having fired everyone on your team waned quickly. Now, you were just sad again over the only thing that really mattered to you.

“When are you headed home?”

You looked up to see Misha standing there. How long he had been there, you didn’t know. You were definitely lost in thought, something that happened more often than not lately.

“Tomorrow morning,” you replied.

“Well, I’m headed out. Enjoy your time off, Y/N.”

“Yeah, you too.”

You pulled yourself together and stood up, realizing that the last scene had been shot and everyone had been cleared to go.

“What are you gonna do with your break?” Misha asked as the two of you walked together, headed for makeup and wardrobe.

“I don’t know,’ you answered. “I suppose I should probably think about how I’m going to manage myself or if I should hire a new team.”

“It’s probably a good idea to hire some new people.”

“Maybe,” you muttered. “Or maybe it’s best if I just take care of myself for now.”

“It’s all a lot to manage on your own,” he reminded you.

“I know. But, I think I have some serious trust issues at the moment.”

He let out a soft chuckle, nodding his head as if to agree.

“Understandable.”

~*~*~*~

When you arrived back at your apartment that night, you had one goal in mind. All you wanted to do was be alone with a bad movie so that you could forget about the things that were still bothering you.

You had changed into sweats and one of Billy’s t-shirts that you had found in your room. Even as you put it on, you knew you were just making things worse. Still, it felt nice to still have something to remind you of him.

You curled up on the couch with a bowl of popcorn and a glass of wine, ready to lose yourself in another rom-com that you had never had the chance to watch before. As you pressed play, you suddenly wished that you had him here with you to give you a hard time about your questionable taste in movies.

You were halfway into the film, already tearing up at the way the lead actor was professing his love to the woman. You didn’t realize that these types of stories could hit you so hard, and your mind immediately went to Billy. You reached up to wipe away tears that had begun to fall down your cheek when the doorbell rang.

You grumpily got up to answer the door, wondering who the hell would be bothering you at this time. You only assumed it was Misha again. For some reason, the man couldn’t take a hint when you said you didn’t want to talk. He had been so pushy about trying to convince you to just talk to Billy already, and it was quite annoying that he wouldn’t give up.

When you opened the door, your breath caught. You swear you felt your heart stop as you laid eyes on him.

“Billy?” You said, surprise in your voice when you finally let it register that it was, in fact, him standing there at the door. “What are you doing here?”

“Well, you didn’t go home after the convention…”

“Work,” you said simply.

“Yeah, I see that now.”

“You didn’t answer my question. Why are you here?”

“You wouldn’t come to me, so I came to you.”

“Why?”

“We didn’t talk last weekend,” he answered. “Can I come in? So we can talk finally?”

You said nothing as you were still in disbelief over the fact that he was actually here. You simply stepped aside and allowed him to come in.

“You look good, Y/N,” he said as you closed the door behind him.

“Oh god,” you mumbled. “I’m a mess…”

You were suddenly very aware of the fact that you weren’t pulled together. You fumbled with your t-shirt, then your messy hair as you blushed when you realized you hated being seen like this.

“You always say that in the moments when I find you the most beautiful,” he replied.

“Billy…”

“You’re also really cute when you’re nervous,” he smiled.

“I’m not nervous,” you argued. “I’m just- surprised to see you.”

“I’m always full of surprises.”

“That you are,” you chuckled.

“Really though, you look really good. Happier in a way.”

“Well, I have a few things to be happy about.”

“So I heard,” he replied. “Misha told me that you finally got rid of some people in your life…”

“Oh, yeah. I finally did the thing.”

“How was that?”

“It’s been- surprisingly freeing,” you laughed. “I feel really good about it.”

“I’m glad to hear that. You deserve to be happy.”

“I know you didn’t come all this way to just ask about that, what did you really come here for?” You asked finally.

“I heard something- a little rumor. I just wanted to ask you about it. Is it true that you’re leaving the show and conventions?”

“Where’d you hear that?”

“Misha,” he said simply. “I’m kinda upset that I have to hear about things like that from him… but I guess since I’m the one who left you, you don’t owe it to me to tell me anything.”

“I don’t hate you for leaving. I get it.”

“Still… I wish that we could just be okay. Enough that you could come to me with things like this.”

“He really said that? That I’m leaving the show?”

“He said you got some role on a film and that you were done with all of this.”

“Uh, huh,” you said, shaking your head with a chuckle. Leave it to Misha to blow everything way out of proportion, especially since he knew damn well you weren’t leaving.

“Is it because of me?” Billy asked.

“You didn’t do anything. I know all of that was my fault. Please don’t blame yourself for anything.”

“After everything that’s happened, you can imagine why I blame myself.”

“I’m not leaving,” you explained. “It was a role that I didn’t earn. I couldn’t take it. Especially when I already have this great gig going on now.”

“Really? You’re gonna keep doing cons?”

“Regardless of everything, I’m happy where I am now. Mostly.”

“That’s good to hear,” he said with a grin. “I was just really worried that I’d never see you again.”

“Misha sure has a way of leaving out the entire truth enough to make people worry,” you chuckled.

“Yeah, I should’ve known he was holding something back.”

“You don’t expect me to believe that you came all this way to just asked me that either, do you?”

“Maybe I’m holding back as well.”

“What are you doing here?” You asked again.

“I guess… I’m really here to apologize,” he began. “I’m sorry for how things went. I’m sorry for walking out on you like I did instead of talking to you.”

“No,” you replied. “I won’t let you do this.”

“Do what?”

“Stop apologizing,” you said sharply. “You have to stop apologizing.”

“Oh, okay,” he replied, looking a bit shocked at the way you stopped him. “I get it… this isn’t going to be fixed because you don’t want it to be fixed. I’m sorry.”

He turned from you and headed for the door. This motion set you in a panic. That wasn’t what you meant at all. You just wanted him to stop apologizing for something that you had done. You needed to be the one to take responsibility.

Now that you had him here, you knew that this was the time that you needed to fix things. You had been avoiding it all for so long, but this had to be a sign. If he was willing to come here to see you, perhaps there really was a chance for the two of you to try things again. Still, you had to be the one to make that happen. You couldn’t sit back and allow him to feel bad for the way things had ended.

“Billy,” you called out after him. You steeled yourself for what you were about to say, hoping that he’d catch on. “I’m damaged. I’m not using what’s happened in my life as an excuse for how I treated you… but, I need you to understand that I don’t know what I’m doing here.”

He stopped in his tracks and turned back to face you, interested in what you had to say. You had expected him to keep walking, but now that you had his attention again, you continued.

“I’m- not very good at letting people love me… and I’m especially bad at loving other people. I admit that I don’t know what I’m doing most of the time, and sometimes I don’t think about how my actions and my words affect others. I’ve been talked down to my entire life… I never really learned how to treat people.”

“Y/N…” he began sadly.

“Please, let me talk,” you cut him off. “You were the first person to ever tell me that they loved me.”

You were holding back the tears that had been building up since the moment you opened that door.

“The only person really,” you continued. “When you first said it to me; I was terrified. I was more scared at the way I didn’t even hesitate to say those words back to you. Just like no one had ever told me they loved me at any other point in my life, I never gave those words to anyone either. Well, until you happened.”

“I meant it every time I said it,” he smiled. “I still do.”

Now, you had to know what his intentions were. It was easy for him to stand here and say these things, it wasn’t so easy for you to say them. You had to know that this wasn’t a pity thing.

“Why would you even want me anymore?” You asked.

Now, the tears were falling freely. For a brief moment you remembered your mother’s hatred of you showing any emotion, and you considered trying to stop yourself. But, then you remembered how safe Billy always made you feel. You remembered how he encourage you to feel things. You remembered all the times you had ever been vulnerable around him… how he accepted your weaknesses and loved your faults.

“Because I fell in love with you and I never stopped loving you,” he said softly.

He looked at you with honesty in his eyes. It was just the same as when he was working so hard to get your attention in the first place. He looked at you with adoration and kindness.

“Why though?”

“Why do you always have to question everything?”

“Because I don’t deserve it,” you replied. “I don’t deserve you and I just want to know what your motivation is by still telling me that you love me. What do you get out of this?”

“That’s not you talking right now,” he said. “That’s still her.”

You scoffed at the mention of your mother. For so long everyone had told you that most of what you felt about yourself wasn’t you at all, it was her and her control over you. By now, you knew that this was true. You knew that still had doubts in people because she had brainwashed you for so long into believing that you were worthless. You only wished that you could move past this way of thinking, but right now, you wondered if you ever could.

“You made a huge step by removing her from your life again, don’t let her continue to make you feel worthless.”

“I can’t- I can’t help it,” you stuttered out. “I just- I don’t deserve you. I don’t deserve any good thing in my life.”

“You deserve to be happy.”

“Do I? After everything I’ve ever said or done to you… you still think I deserve to be happy?”

“You’re a good person. A good person who has just been through some not-so-good things.”

No matter how much you believed that you didn’t deserve him or happiness, he never let you forget that he believed otherwise.

“At what point do you finally give up on me?” You asked, unsure if you really wanted to know the answer to that.

“There is no point in time where that will ever happen.”

“I’m not sure if I’m flattered or just annoyed at your persistence now.”

“I don’t give up easily.”

“I really did miss you,” you said softly.

“Hey,” he smiled. “I meant it when I said that I missed you.”

For the first time ever, you knew that you needed to ask for forgiveness. He seemed to have already forgiven you, and it would be easy to just take this as it was and move on. But, you knew you needed to do this the right way. You needed to fix the things that you had broken. It was never something that you had done before, but standing here, hearing him apologize to you for something you had done; you understood that sometimes it was okay to let your guard down and be vulnerable for some people.

“Can I just say something?” You asked.

“Of course.”

“I’m the one who is sorry,” you replied firmly. “I’m sorry for my disregard for your feelings. I’m sorry I made you feel like your thoughts didn’t matter. I’m sorry I didn’t respect you and what you do, that was horrible of me. I’m sorry that I didn’t understand why I hurt you. And I’m sorry that my original apology was a terrible one. I’m sorry. For everything.”

“I know you are,” he replied.

Finally, he had stopped apologizing to you. That was all you really wanted from him. All you really needed was for him to know that you truly did feel bad for what you had done, and you needed him to know how sorry you were. At this point, you didn’t expect for him to ever forgive you, but you figured it was a worth a shot anyway.

“Is there a chance that you can forgive me?” You asked. “I know I don’t deserve it, and I still think that I don’t deserve you. But, the past couple of months have been so damn hard, and I don’t know how I even got along without you before.”

“I can forgive you,” he smiled. “I have forgiven you.”

“Do you think… do you think that you and I still have a shot?” You asked carefully.

“Are you asking if we can get back together?”

“I’m trying to,” you chuckled. “But, I’m really bad at this.”

“You’re doing great,” he said as he moved closer to you.

“Well?” You asked finally. “Do we… have a shot at being together again?”

As the words finally left your lips, he was standing in front of you, wrapping his arms around your waist and pulling you close to him. Your heart raced as you waited for him to answer you. Even with the way he had been trying to fix all of this himself, you still felt that there was a possibility that he’d walk away from you for good.

He smiled down at you, that look in his eyes that never failed to light a fire within you. You felt his hands caressing your back as he held you close. You felt the happiness that you had lost out on build up again. You felt safe and loved again.

“I think there’s a chance,” he teased.

“Well, what do I have to do to know for sure? Please don’t make me beg, because I’m already really out of my comfort zone right now…”

“Just ask,” he replied.

You paused briefly, studying him to make sure that he wasn’t saying all of this just to mess with you. You really didn’t know if your ego could handle being damaged after being so vulnerable at this point. Instead of thinking about it too much, you decided that maybe you deserved a shot to your pride. Maybe you being open and honest would result in a broken heart, but maybe you also needed that.

“Can you give me another chance?” You asked finally. “Can we try us again?”

“I thought you’d never ask,” he smiled.

He didn’t necessarily answer you, but he leaned in and crashed his lips against yours in a frantic kiss. You moved to wrap your arms around his shoulders, pulling him as close to you as you possibly could once it registered that this was really happening.

There didn’t have to be words this time. He kissed you the way he used to back when the two of you started to fall in love with each other. This moment right here, was your answer; and it was exactly what you had hoped for.

Chapter Text

You and Billy returned home the following day. You were still in disbelief that he had actually showed up in Vancouver just to talk to you, but the fact that he did made you remember why you loved him so much.

He was the one person in the world who never gave up on you, even if sometimes you felt like he should.

Every word that you had been too afraid to say to him had finally been said, and the forgiveness that you didn’t think you deserved had been given to you. You felt as if nothing could come in between the two of you, even when things seemed impossible.

You never thought you could be in this place again; with him, happy, loved… You chalked it up to your newfound freedom and sudden sense of accomplishment since you had removed certain people in your life. All you knew was that you would do everything in your power to never lose him again.

The two of you slipped easily back into your old ways easily. You’d spend your days together now that you were on break and he wasn’t working too much. You’d take turns spending the night at each other’s places; ordering takeout and just being together. He never brought up the things that you had done again, and you were grateful that he was willing to put all of that in the past and just move forward with you.

It helped tremendously that you didn’t have Jen or your mother breathing down your neck, encouraging you to make different choices, and demanding things from you. Now, you were free. And you had honestly never felt happier.

Things should have been really good at this point. You had worked so hard to make a better life for yourself. But, you learned rather quickly during that first week back home and back with Billy that some toxic people just don’t let go.

***

All it took was a short email to remind you that you weren’t quite in the clear yet when it came to your mother and the people who surrounded you during your entire career. Honestly, you hadn’t thought about your contracts and what all of this could mean if you chose to break those contracts. In fact, you really didn’t know much about your own contracts at all.

You turned to Billy while the two of you spent time together at your place, when you realized you didn’t quite understand what the email from your mother was getting at. All he could do was give you a concerned look as he asked to see a copy of the contract.

You hastily retrieved it and handed it over to him, hoping that he at least understood what was going on.

He spent a long time reading it over, flipping back and forth between the pages, and occasionally letting out frustrated sighs as he pushed his glasses up so that he could pinch the bridge of his nose.

“So, what exactly does this mean?” You asked, as he finally set the documents down to indicate that he was finished reading them.

“Did you not read the contracts that you signed?”

“I was young. A teenager…”

“You didn’t read them and you didn’t have a lawyer look over them,” he said.

“I- I didn’t know I had to. I think my mom had someone look them over,” you argued. “I was told that everything was in my best interest.”

“By your mother?”

“She’s still my mother.”

“You let her draw this contract up, didn’t you?”

“What was I supposed to do? I wanted to just be free and she wanted to be rid of me. Regardless of our relationship, I never thought she’d screw me over.”

“Well, she did. This contract is airtight. It also completely benefits everyone but you. Please tell me you were a minor when you signed these. At least then you’d have some chance in fighting this.”

“I wasn’t. I had just turned eighteen.”

“How?” Billy began, shaking his head in confusion. “How did you get yourself into this situation in the first place? A contract between you and your manager and publicist is one thing… but how is she even involved?”

“Like I said, maybe I didn’t necessarily read anything.”

“She controls most of your finances?” He sighed, running a hand over his face.

You felt stupid right now. Back then, you had been so eager to leave home and be far away from her, and she seemed to want the same thing. When your acting career began to pick up, she was the one who contacted you about it. After a bit of berating from her, she offered to draw up contracts so that you wouldn’t get yourself into trouble. She claimed you were too childish and stupid to handle things like money and having control over those who would work for you.

She had told you that she would hire a team on your behalf. She was a smart woman who you assumed knew people and had your best interest at heart, if only to not make her look bad.

Over the years, you had realized that the people she had helping you through this were not out to help you benefit, but by the time you saw it, what could you do?

Still, you never imagined that she would purposely hurt you.

“What else does she have control over, Y/N?” Billy asked as he set the contract down.

You shrugged, blushing as he asked. You really didn’t want to tell him. You didn’t want him to know how stupid you were. “Tell me, so we can figure this out.”

“Well,” you began. “She is technically my manager… so, a lot.“

“That woman…” he muttered, looking even more frustrated than before. “She has completely screwed you over. Seriously, I’m not even all the way through this contract, but I can tell you that she made absolutely sure that if you ever decided to fire any of these people working for you, it would not go well for you.”

“Okay,” you said quietly.

You stared at the ground, unsure of how to react to this. Not once had you ever read those papers. You had blindly allowed her to basically manage you without your knowledge and you really didn’t want to know more about what all of this meant for you.

“You need to read this,” he said firmly. “You need to understand it. I get that you were young and naive back then, but you have no excuse now.”

You sat across from him at the table, reaching out as he handed the stack of papers to you. He was right. You had been an idiot before and just assumed people would treat you with respect. It was time for you to know exactly what you had gotten yourself into and what the repercussions of firing everyone would do to you.

After a couple of hours of reading, and asking Billy a lot of questions on the things that you didn’t understand; which often resulted in him consulting with Rob who had a better understanding of the acting business and contracts in general; you sat there, feeling defeated and ready to cry.

“What does this mean?” You asked again.

“It means that if you choose to go through with letting everyone go and breaking this contract, you might be getting yourself into a bad situation.”

“So, my choices are; do what I’ve needed to do for years and in return be completely miserable; or, keep these people in my life, no matter how miserable they make me so I don’t lose everything?”

“It’s not even a decision, Y/N,” Billy replied. “You can’t let them stay in your life like this. You can’t let them continue to have this power over you.”

“I break this contract, and they get everything. Is that what you’re saying?”

“I don’t know for sure, but that’s what it looks like,” he said honestly. “Look, I don’t know a lot about all of this. My advice would be to get real advice from a lawyer. You have a lawyer, right?”

“I do,” you replied.

“Do you have a lawyer that wasn’t hired by your mother?”

You frowned, realizing that everyone that your mother had surrounded you with were people that she handpicked. There was no way you’d be getting real help from anyone that technically worked for her.

“Maybe I need to find a different lawyer,” you stated.

***

You had been advised to meet with a lawyer that was recommended to you by Rob as soon as possible. He was pretty certain that there wasn’t much you could do, but if anyone would know, it would be a lawyer.

You found yourself in a stuffy meeting room, anxious and early for your appointment. You fidgeted in your seat, now wishing that you had asked Billy to come with you, but knowing that this was something you had to do on your own. Still, Billy had such a calming effect on you and he would have been really useful right now.

You waited for a few minutes until a man entered the room. You recognized him as the lawyer that Rob had sent you the contact information of.

He sat down across from you, his eyes meeting yours as he let out a drawn out sigh. Right away, you knew this was not going to be a good meeting.

“Hello, Ms. Y/L/N,” he started. He reached out to shake your hand and you obliged, nodding at him and letting out a quick ‘hello’ in return.

“Well, I’ve familiarized myself with your case and your contract, and I think we should cut to the chase.”

“Please do,” you said quietly, eager to hear that perhaps it wasn’t all a lot cause.

“I’m obligated to let you know that your mother has offered to renegotiate the terms of the contract, as long as you agree to keep on all staff that worked for you.”

“Then no,” you said quickly. “That’s not an option.”

He eyed you and you were unsure if he thought of you as a complete idiot or maybe a pretty smart woman considering the circumstances and that mess of a contract.

“Alright. Then let’s discuss this.”

He opened a file folder and began to shuffle through paperwork. You suddenly became nervous as his expression remained rather stoic.

“You’re already in breach of contract. In doing so, you’re legally obligated to pay settlements to all fired employees binded to the contract.”

“That’s a lot of people,” you chuckled.

“It is,” he said sternly. “You also paid each of your employees a lot of money as it was.”

“Of course I did.”

“It’s also not funny.”

“Okay.”

“After talking in great length with your accountant,” he continued, “I’m concerned. Your savings is not what is usual for a celebrity of your status.”

“Well, I paid my employees really well apparently, and what can I say? I also have expensive taste.”

“Yes, and hardly enough money to cover the costs calculated to pay these settlements.”

“What does that mean?”

“It means you’re going to find yourself in a lot more legal trouble than you thought.”

“How much?” You asked. “How much money do I have and what do I have to come up with?”

He passed you a slip of paper and you cautiously opened it to read it. You were more broke than you thought. It didn’t help that you had an unknown number of people possibly dipping into your saving, and your acquired expensive taste in belongings also didn’t help.

“Okay, how much do I need to cover these costs?”

“Well, we made a quick estimation; settlement costs, my fees… everything… you could lose your house, Y/N. Your car… anything of value could be taken if you can’t afford to pay these settlements.”

You sucked in a breath and leaned back in your chair as you took a moment to let it all sink in. Of course. Of course this was happening right now. Not only was it almost impossible to remove that woman for your life, she had ensured that it would be financially difficult to so if you chose to walk away and cut ties.

No matter what you did, it was as if she was one step ahead, making sure that you suffered.

“Can I fight this?” You asked finally, praying that there was some sliver of hope that you could possibly win and walk away from this unscathed.

“Honestly, no,” he replied. “That’s your signature on the contract. It’s a legal document and it’s very well written. No stone was left unturned here to make sure that the people who work for you get theirs in the end.”

“What are my options?”

“Well, you can take up the offer to renegotiate the terms, possibly avoid any financial burden from this; or you pay everyone what you promised them should a breach of contract happen.”

“That’s… that’s a lot of money,” you said, now trying to fight back tears. “A lot of money that I don’t have.”

“Well, you do have assets,” he continued. “I know it’s not ideal having to start all over, but selling your property would likely cover these costs.”

“So, I can just sell my house, my car, all my stuff; and I can pay these fees and be done with it all?”

“Well, by calculations, yes you could do that. You’d be left with nothing really in the end though. Are you sure this isn’t a situation that can’t be handled otherwise. Not many actors get the offer for a renegotiation.”

“Absolutely not,” you said sternly. “I can’t- I can’t let that woman control any part of my life anymore. I’ll do anything to get rid of her.”

“So…” he hesitated, watching you as you let the options replay in your mind once again.

“So, I’ll do it. I’ll just walk away. They can have whatever. I don’t care.”

“Look, this is only our first day meeting about this. I just want to make sure you understand the seriousness of the situation. We can discuss it more in depth, see if we can’t find other options…”

“I don’t want that. I just want to be done with this. With her.”

“So, it appears that you’ve made a decision.”

“Yes, I have. Just tell me what I need to do to end this.”

***

You walked away from that meeting feeling defeated. The weight of the reality of what was to come was a lot for you to carry. Everything that you had worked so hard for, would be gone. Everything that you had earned in spite of her would now be hers.

It was poetic in a way. Of course the victim here would eventually lose everything to her tormentor. Still, you had also worked so hard at becoming a stronger person; a person who could be on her own and who could make decisions for herself. In a way, you felt proud for still choosing to walk away. You figured the reality of it would come later when you were truly left with nothing.

You called Billy as you got into your car, asking him to meet you for lunch so that you could talk to him about what had happened.

He agreed and you took a deep breath as you hung up the phone, now focused on your next destination

***

Over lunch, you explained the meeting to Billy in as much detail as you could recall. It had been a lot to take in and it was still a lot to register.

“Wow,” he breathed out when you had finished your explanation. “I- I really thought you might have had some chance in fighting some of that.”

“It is what it is,” you chuckled.

“So, they’re really just going to drain your bank account?” He asked as if he couldn’t even believe it himself.

“Well, I’m paying a lot of money in settlements to break this contract. Then there’s the lawyer fees…”

“Well, you’ll be done with it all though,” he replied hopefully. “That’ll be a relief. And hey, you’re amazing. You’ll get amazing jobs and make even more money.”

“Yeah, I also was already kinda broke though. I didn’t realize… but I spent a lot of money and possibly overpaid people who worked for me.”

“What does that mean?”

“I’m selling my house,” you said. “And my car and anything else of value.”

“Really?”

“Yeah. Who knew that if I really wanted her out of my life, it would mean she would screw me over?”

“So, now what?” He asked.

“I’m not really sure,” you sighed. “I expect I’ll be okay, once this is all done and over with and I can manage my own career from here on out, or maybe hire a real manager.”

“So, you’re really just broke and homeless now?”

He leaned back, crossing his arms over his chest as he looked at you in disbelief.

“Hmm,” you hummed in response. “It’s actually quite humbling.”

“I guess I better pay for lunch then,” he smiled.

Perhaps it wasn’t really a joking manner, after all, you were still trying to process the seriousness of it all. But, you couldn’t help but smile back at him. Maybe it was the fact that you felt some relief over being done with these people, even if it meant losing everything; or maybe it was the way that he sat across from you, that warm smile peeking out from behind that mess of a beard and those gorgeous eyes looking at you as if you were the most beautiful thing he had ever seen. Whatever it was, you felt okay. You honestly felt that, as long as you had him next to you, you’d be fine.

“And I guess you can sleep at my place tonight,” he added. “Not sure what you’ll do after that though.”

“I’ll manage. Anything I make now that I’m out of that contract is mine, I think. And, hey! I have actual friends now, I’m sure someone will give me a place to crash.”

“Stop it,” he said as he rolled his eyes. “I’m joking. I mean, my place isn’t as nice as yours was, but if you need a place to stay…”

“I couldn’t intrude…”

“Of course I’m offering, Y/N.”

“I really hate it when people pity me,” you whined.

“It’s not pity,” he said firmly. “It’s just love.”

You gave him an honest smile. Nothing felt better than to hear that word come from his lips as he directed it at you. Yeah, you would be fine.

“God, I really do love you,” you reminded him.

“You know, maybe it’s for the best that you’re down on your luck. I don’t know if I would have built up the courage to convince you to move in with me otherwise.”

“Move in with you?”

“Might as well,” he shrugged. “I kinda like having you around. And I also think that you kinda need me right now.”

“Well, regardless of my behavior in the past, you should know that you are all I ever needed all along.”