Leonard awoke to the sound of a marker frantically scrawling on a white-board. It was not an unusual sound to hear in the morning, and Leonard almost felt comforted by its presence. His roommate was a predictable man, and although sometimes Sheldon’s compulsions were the death of him he couldn’t help but be somewhat affectionate toward the rituals.
They were especially comforting this week, when nothing else in his life seemed to be bringing him much comfort. He had seen Penny in the hallway there times yesterday, and although it was silly and childish he had felt yet another pang of hurt. Their breakup, though almost weeks ago now, was still fresh in his mind.
“Stop pretending, Leonard, we gave it a try and its not working.” She had said, and she was, to Leonard’s dismay, right. It was not working. The two argued almost all the time, and the only time they seemed to be on the same page was when they were having sex, an act that was occurring with less and less frequency now. Their relationship had no substance, no real bedrock. Penny was right, it was time to stop pretending.
After a silence, he had asked, “Could we still be friends?” The answer: “I hope so.” But to no one’s surprise, the feat had proved difficult, and the awkwardness and pain still persisted in both of them. Worse yet, Leonard had been taking it out on his roommate. For the first few days, Sheldon had deserved Leonard’s snippiness, spewing countless ‘I told you so’s and other general jerkisms. 5 days after the breakup Sheldon had been chirping about something of that sort when Leonard had snapped. A full on, warp-10, snap.
“Honestly Leonard, I don’t know what you expected, surely even you could have seen how this was going to turn out. But there you were, thinking with your genitals again…”
“Will you just…shut up?!” Leonard had said. The color seemed to drain from Sheldon’s face. “We get it, you are so much better than us. You know, Sheldon? I feel sorry for you. You’re never going to know what its like to love someone, or be loved by someone And I think that’s sad..”
Sheldon looked as if he had wilted, and his eyes were focused squarely on the floor. The tall man suddenly seemed very small to Leonard, and the shorter man began to realize the gravity of what he had just said.
“I’m very sorry if I’ve upset you, Leonard.” Sheldon said quietly, looking at his shoes. “That was never my intention.” And then he exited the living room, and Leonard heard Sheldon’s bedroom door close with a solid thunk. And even though Leonard stood by what he said, there was no denying that the sound of that door broke a little piece of his heart.
That had been five weeks ago. Things had been rough between him and Sheldon for the first few days (rough being defined as “complete radio silence to one another”), but now they had settled back into their little routine, almost as if the incident hadn’t happened.
Leonard slipped from his bed and padded his way into the living room. As he suspected, he found his roommate, still clad in his robe, scribbling on the white-board. But, to Leonard’s confusion, he wasn’t writing Physics equations.
“Good morning.” Sheldon said, still scribbling and with his back turned to him.
“Morning, Sheldon. Watcha’ doin’?” Leonard said, stifling a yawn.
Sheldon turned to him, then. Cocked his head to the side, and formed his mouth into a pout.
“What do you mean, what am I doing? Please tell me you haven’t forgotten what we’re doing this weekend.”
“Good lord, Leonard, It’s been on the apartment calendar for months!” Sheldon scoffed.
“I, um---I don’t remember.” Leonard said. He had been so caught up in his drama the past few weeks it was a miracle he managed to make to work every day.
“How could you forget BuddyCon! Southern California’s premier duo-oriented convention!” Sheldon exclaimed.
“Oh, yeah.” Leonard said sheepishly. “I...I just assumed we were skipping this year.”
“Why would you think that?”
Leonard gulped. “You know, because of….the stuff that happened between us a couple weeks ago.”
“Oh,” Sheldon said quietly.
A beat of awkward silence fell upon the two.
“Well,” Sheldon finally said. “We are still going. And we need to pick a costume.”
“Okay,” Leonard said, a little uneasily. “What exactly did you have in mind?”
“I believe Koothrapali and Wolowitz are going as something called ‘Wayne’s World.’ I do not know where it originates and do not care to find out, but whatever it is we cannot do it.”
Sheldon began to motion to his board.
“I have spent this morning compiling a list of classic duos we could emulate, and have it down to a couple of choices, if you want to look.”
Now that was new, Leonard thought. Sheldon almost never asked for Leonard’s opinion, especially, on anything related to Cons.
Taken aback, Leonard almost didn’t know how to respond.
“Uh, it’s alright. Why don’t you pick your favorite?”
“Well, we did Spock and Kirk for that Con two years ago, and I hate to repeat costumes. Okay! That settles it. Cecil and Carolos it is.”
Leonard raised an eyebrow.
“You mean like, from Nightvale?”
“No, not ‘like’ from Nightvale, from Nightvale!!” Sheldon said. And then, again to Leonard’s surprise, he hesitated. “Do you dislike my choice?”
“No! That’s not it at all. I just, you know they’re a couple, right?” Leonard said softly.
“Of course there a couple! That’s why were dressing as them—have you forgotten that this is a Con centered around couples?”
“That’s not what I—“ Leonard was about to explain, but something told him to just drop it. “Never mind. I love it.”
“Excellent! Now all that’s left is to figure out who will be who. Now, I’m inclined to claim Carlos, as he is a scientist, but Cecil is more of the charismatic leader type, which I also identify with….”
Sheldon was still musing over the choice when Leonard went to make himself breakfast.
Whatever he chooses, Leonard thought, this should be interesting…