doctor who
=> impasse
=> what black magic can do
=> i cut a star with my knife
=> if only i would wake
=> inscrutable
=> higher now than ever before
=> like a drifter takes a friend
=> traced away the fog
=> slow night soft light
=> legendary
the o.c.
miscellaneous fandoms

Claire stands all akimbo, head cocked left and hips tilting right. “I’ve helped to save the world, Peter, and I’ve graduated high school and damned if I’m going to be caught up in high school games.” She’s not a Wildcat anymore, but she is fierce. Her blonde hair haloes her face, flushed pink in tenacity. Her posture and her mane make her a lioness. It’s gorgeous, flattering and faintly frightening.

He remembers the way she eyed him with Simone earlier in the evening, casually talking about Isaac, work, the world, her dress shimmering the color of the champagne in her glass. He’s glad she came around in time to help, because they needed her. And even now, with all known threats gone and Nathan safely ensconced in office, it’s always good to have more allies.

He remembers, too, her unwillingness to flirt back with him later. His attempt to be dashing— “Claire, would you do me the honor of this dance?”—and her refusal, though they’ve been dancing around it for months, circling ever closer to this moment.

It would be so easy to mess with her, to tease her the way he has for nine months, with her retaliating, initiating in turn. But it means something different now, more than friendship or flirting, and he knows it just like she knows she’s got to be the one to broach the subject. He understands that to be facetious now would be to trivialize her feelings and everything the two of them have become, just as she understands that she has to be the one to step up; she has to take that leap of faith, like so many he’s taken before. And so she has, at this party, in this moment.

He speaks softly, shakes his head gently. “No games, Claire.” He smiles faintly. “I couldn’t… You’re so special, Claire. You shine. And Simone and I were over months ago. We barely ever began.” He steps closer to her, even as she begins to crumble.

To watch her fold in on herself is magnificent, and painful: she mumbles an “oh,” followed by a few apologetic but unintelligible syllables; her shoulders sag, gaze dropping to the ground. The lioness is slinking away. He moves forward again, and catches one bicep gently. “Hey. Claire. Hey.”

“I just…” She sounds discontent, though it’s what he thought she wanted to hear. She looks away again. When she speaks, her voice is quiet but straining with emotion. “I feel so… transparent. What are we doing, Peter?”

She’s missed a lot of growing up, he realizes: being indestructible and saving the world can put a damper on peer relationships. Claire’s eighteen now, but still so young.

“Right now?” he murmurs, bringing a hand to tilt her chin up. “I’m kissing you.” But he pulls back before it can escalate. “Relax, Claire. It’s you and me. I don’t need to you to be inscrutable. I just need you to be you.”

“All right,” Claire says, smiling slowly, shyly. “I think I can do that.”

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