A Sixpence in Her Shoe


nicole_icon.gif zachery_icon.gif

Scene Title A Sixpence in Her Shoe
Synopsis The Millers celebrate the good fortune they've found in each other.
He may be drunk, but in the morning he will be sober and she will still be beautiful.
Date April 4, 2020

Safe Zone

“Oh no!”


“I’m not sure you do, though?”

“Just scan the card thingy.”

Fine, but if I get a concussion on the doorpost, that’s on you.”

A quiet beep indicates that the door has been unlocked successfully. The squeak of surprise indicates the bride has been swept off her feet. With a press of the groom’s elbow against the handle of the door, he’s able to shove it open with his foot and stagger through the doorway with his new wife in his arms.

“Careful!” Nicole ducks against Zachery as he turns to walk them sideways through the door. Her head misses the frame, but her heels clack noisily against it.

"Flawless." Proclaims Zachery, introducing himself and his new wife into the hotel room with all the grace of a heron caught in a fishing net. But between the events of the day, the alcohol and the cop-provided high, he is determined.

With the door clicking gently shut behind them, he stumbles heavily forward, peering out into the unfamiliar and only almost tripping over his own feet on the way to the bed. "Seeee? Fine. You doubt me too m—hhhwOOP."

Forward momentum is a bitch. The bed's higher than expected (and also closer???), and he crashes into it wholesale, grip on his prize slipping instantly as he reflexively tries to reach out to catch himself and not his wife. Shit.

He goes spilling forward, and Nicole — an object in motion that is wont to stay in motion — hits the opposite edge of the mattress, bouncing once with a cry of alarm, then disappearing over the side and toppling onto the plushly carpeted floor of their suite.

So, the wedding night is off to a great start.

“I think I doubt you exactly as much as I should,” Nicole counters her husband’s assertion from her new resting place on the floor. One hand appears over the top of the mattress, a thumbs up. She’s fine.

The panic on Zachery's face once he realises what's happened is loud — but brief. "Hhhaa," he breathes in as much relief as amusement as the thumbs up comes into view, before he takes stock of where he is.

Mostly on the bed, apparently. So much for that catch.

There's a grunt of effort before Nicole can see the blankets shifting. Her new husband appears within view, having climbed over and giving absolutely no warning before he starts to let gravity help him off the bed. It's only fair. "Juuust a sec—" is all he manages before the rest of him comes down to the ground all at once.

There’s more squeaking sounds from the new bride as she brings her hands up to brace as she realizes a moment too late what her husband’s intentions are. “Zachery!” She’s spared the brunt of him hitting against her by virtue of the fact that he doesn’t have far to fall, and she’s already seated with her knees up. Between that and her hands, she mostly is able to make sure he falls between her and the bed, rather than on top of her.

Careful,” she chides, still a bit on the shrill side. But she’s laughing, and that’s always a good sign.

"'M invincible," Zachery offers as a solid counterargument - since he hasn't died yet! - wrestling away the loose jacket that's fallen down with him before shoving it roughly aside. Then, with his arm already stretched out anyway, he reaches for his wife's ankle from where he slowly props himself up onto an elbow. "N'you are too fucking beautiful."

Now that they're alone and the day has properly whittled down his ability to filter himself down to nothing, he couldn't possibly look more convinced of his words, his grin stupid with gladness for this moment. And his hand making its way up her dress.

I’m not!” Nicole argues. “Gonna crush me, you—” She doesn’t have a good comeback for that when he grasps at her ankle. Instead, she just laughs again, shaking her head. “You are drunk,” she teases, deflecting the compliment.

She leans forward then to start working free the ankle strap of the shoe opposite side to the leg Zachery has claimed. It’s been a long day in these shoes. They’re comfortable, and she took frequent breaks, but they’re still heels.

Zachery rights himself enough to sit up alongside her, planting a hand onto the ground and leaning only some of himself into her when he slides the hand greedily further up her leg, past a knee, and shoves his face into her neck to ask, "Whose beautiful fault's that?"

Yourssss.” Nicole squirms a little bit as his hand slips past her knee and is undeterred by layers of organza and taffeta. She reaches up from her work with her shoe to cup her hand against the back of his head. “I didn’t give you that much tequila.”

"Can't be that drunk then." He leans into her more heavily, warmth and pressure against her side increasing until he's clambering on top of her, both hands now working the fabric of her dress upward. "So then'm right," is surmised, smug grin audible on his voice, "You are beautiful."

Checked the math. GET FUCKING TOLD, NICOLE.

The breath hitches in the back of Nicole’s throat as his climbing over her forces the peak of her knees to flatten and for her to brace both her hands on the floor to keep from tipping back into the nightstand. “H- Hey. Not on— Maybe not on the floor?” she asks shakily, afraid to break the magic of the moment, but also wanting to avoid hitting her head on anything, thanks.

Still not admitting to nothing.

That's too bad.

"Oooorrr maybe," Zachery counters, "floor a little bit?"

One of his hands is landed back onto the floor so he can steady himself a little, even if it does mean Nicole's dress is caught messily underneath it when he says, just before leaning to kiss her, "'Less you say it."

“Oof!” Nicole tips to the side slightly as her dress tugs, practically tumbling into the kiss he presses to her mouth. Her eyes slide shut as she reciprocates, leaning into it rather than reach up to touch him. She needs all the stability she can get in the face of Hurricane Zachery here.

When they part for air finally, she grins against his mouth. “I’m beeeeeeing concerned about how I’m going to hit my head on something,” she says sweetly.

In another bout of movement, Zachery's other hand slips from Nicole's body and WHOMPF— blindly pulls something off of the bed and leaves it half smashed against the side of her head.

Fortunately, it's a pillow, and there's ultimately worse things to get smashed with. There you go. Head protection.

He doesn't even look when he returns his hand to her, pulling her closer by the waist while he distractedly mutters into her neckline, with alcohol still on his breath, "D'you've any idea… what it's like… to be in a room — all day — where everyone's hearts beat faster every time they see you."

Another startled cry at the flying object that collides with her head.

Yes, that could have been far worse.

Nicole grasps the pillow and tosses it back up onto the bed. “Zach, c’mon,” she protests, but only verbally. Her physical responses are encouraging. Both the ones she intends — such as the cant of her head to give him better access to her neck — and those she can’t control — like the way her heart beats faster.

“Surely not everyone,” Nicole argues, clearly debating with herself about whether or not to try to discourage this from going too far, because she really wants to get off the floor. This shows in the laying of one delicate hand on his shoulder and the way she gently starts to guide him back, but never quite makes it forceful enough to even be a suggestion.

"Everyone," Zachery replies quickly enough for it not to involve much consideration for the alternative. To him, it may as well be true.

The hand on his shoulder is only there for a second before his own finds its wrist. He grabs it a little more tightly than Nicole is used to, addled and uncoordinated, before he sloowly leans back and then falls onto his ass. Simultaneously, his grip loosens so he can let his fingers slide to grab her hand and hold it as high up as he can get it. Alright, alright. "Upupup."

Adoration somehow persists in the midst of palpable impatience, and he fails to fight back a smile while waiting for her to rise first.

Nicole’s fingers curl in on themselves when Zachery grasps her wrist. She holds a moment, waiting to see what he’s trying to direct her toward, then laughs. As though he can bring her to her feet by holding her arm up over her head. Slipping free of his hold, she grasps the edge of the bed with one hand and the nightstand with the other, using the two for leverage to drag herself to her feet.

She moves to the end of the bed, sitting down on the edge of the mattress there instead. “Let me get my shoes off now, okay? You don’t want my feet to swell up!” Besides, she kind of likes when he has to wait for what he wants. His impatience can be cute. She is impossibly fond of him.

Did she get up? Yes. So, the hand helped. CASE CLOSED.

He continues staring upward from where he sits, inhaling sloowly and all the way as his gaze narrows. Then, he too begins to move, rising to his feet so that he can hoist himself up onto the side of the bed. He doesn't like waiting quite as much, but at least the sigh he breathes is still accompanied by a smirk.

Putting words to the thoughts floating around in his head is hard work, but he manages to find some just as he's hunching forward to start working off his own shoes. "This's your fault."

“Nnhn.” Nicole sounds in the negative. Insisting, “Pretty sure it’s yours.” With one strap finally slipped free from its buckle, the first of the strappy red heels finds itself kicked away toward the desk across the room. The second one is removed easier and given an underhand toss to join its sister.

“What’re we blaming each other for, exactly?”

"Hmmmh," Zachery sounds in the undecided. Debating aloud, "Maybe nnnot… fault." With the second thud of his own shoes' soles hitting the ground, he turns to face Nicole again.

It's a look that attempts to be scrutinising, but falls far too short for the same reasons his words still leave him a little slowly. "Maybe just - your doing." His brow lifts as if to ask whether that's better, before he scoots further onto the bed and looks down at his fuckin' waistcoat to start wrestling some buttons free past a loose, swinging tie that's only barely hanging on at this point.

What is my doing?” Nicole asks again. The same question, just phrased differently. She gets to her feet and rounds the corner of the bed so she can lean over his prone form and start working buttons from holes more deftly than he currently can.

Then, she’s loosening his tie with care. The way only someone who cares about fashion as much as she does would bother to do in this situation. It makes a whispering sound as she gently unthreads it from beneath the tuck of his collar. Coiling its length around her hand idly, she lifts her brows, prompting for the answer to her query.

Zachery is happy to let Nicole do most of the work while he watches on, face lifting as the tie is pulled away. "This." He replies unhelpfully, when she meets his gaze. Then he adds, maybe vaguely beginning to resemble helpfully, "Me."

He somewhat blearily studies his wife's expression, then blinks and holds a breath in preparation to focus on speech for a second. He's only doing this partly on purpose. "Happy that if I have to be jealous," he manages up at her with sharpness artificially grafted back onto his words, "that I at least get to be jealous on our fucking wedding night."

“You…” She chuckles quietly, stepping away with the tie to set it aside on the desk. “You have nothing to be jealous about. I married you.” As if he needs reminding. He literally just said so. “So what if others are envious of what you have? Let them be.” Nicole shrugs, turning to lean against the edge of the desk. “You have no control over what other people feel.”

Languidly, she gestures with one hand through the air. “If somebody else happens to agree with you about my being beautiful,” which is almost like admitting she might be, “that’s hardly my fault.”

"What if I just keep saying things until you admit that you are fucking stunning," asks Zachery, of no one. He's already made up his mind, pushing a hand up over his shoulder to start shaking his shirt off. Get outta here.

But back to the point. "Let's start easy, yeah?" He looks up, while pulling himself out of his sleeves while a grin slowly spreads, to one side more than the other. "You looked extremely well put together today."

Already, she’s enjoying this little game of his. Watching him struggle to undress himself is just the cherry on top of this particular sundae. Nicole inclines her head, a hand coming up to rest demurely against her chest, gracious. “I worked very hard, with the help of my sister-in-law.”

But does she really understand the game, though? Zachery, valiantly fighting to rid himself of a waistcoat his cruel bindings, pauses to give a small handwave as if to DISMISS Nicole's efforts. "That one was easy."

Once free, he falls back on the bed and yanks a pillow closer to stuff under his head. "Sssecond thiing. Worse thing."

He tries, for all of five seconds flat, to find some territory just outside of polite conversation. But then he just laughs, feeling the control slip out from underneath him in a way that both alcohol and drugs make suddenly okay, his mind swerving too loudly out toward the very other end of the extreme he was hoping to get to in about six more compliments. But no. Still grinning, "Your tits are great."

Jesus Christ.” Nicole turns a shade of scarlet immediately that matches the flowers embroidered into her dress. The hand at her chest comes up and covers her mouth instead, pointedly looking away from her new husband.

Thank you.” She clears her throat. Is he done??

Apparently not, though at this point, his grin could hardly grow any more.

"Earlier, closer to the end - I was looking at you across the room," he pauses and chuckles, both arms now coming up to be folded behind his head. "I remembered you warning me against messing up your hair or make up, so I just stood there wondering if it would preserve them if I just bent you over in the coat room, instead." Did they even have one? Does it matter?

Blue eyes grow wider and she finds a black and white photograph of the old New York skyline on the wall to fix her gaze on while she stands frozen in her embarrassment. Speaking from personal experience is not the way to start her response, given that he’s the type given toward jealousy. “I… would imagine it would have done the trick, yes.”

Nicole busies herself with her earrings. Reaching up in turn, she pulls away the backing and slides the post from her ear, refitting the two pieces together before setting aside the jewelry on the desk beside her. The neckline of her dress is high enough that she didn’t detract from it with a necklace, so she moves on to the ever-present tennis bracelet around her wrist. “Something old,” she murmurs to herself as she unclasps it and sets the diamonds aside.

Now she reaches up to grasp at the zipper at the back of her neck. “Something new…” The sound of the teeth parting as she drags the pull down her spine cuts through the silence that hangs between them, like the dress now hangs off her shoulders, gaped in back where he can’t see.

Rather than slide it off, she gathers up her skirt on the right side instead. “Already gave back the something borrowed,” so her thumbs hook under the empty garter belt around her thigh, dragging it down slowly and watching her husband’s face while she does. Over her knee, down the length of her smooth leg and sent flying in his direction in a flurry of white lace and red ribbon with a flick of her foot.

Slowly, Zachery's expression relaxes again. He steers himself slowly away from crudely obnoxious just to prove a point to something just ever so slightly more sober, settling into something that's a lot more genuinely appreciative.

Contentment only doubles when he catches the garter belt flung his direction, and he props himself up onto his elbows so he can more closely look at it. Of course it, too, is colour coordinated. There is no surprise on his face when he looks at his wife again, but the impatience is still clearly with him in the restlessness of the fist that closes around the lace and ribbon.

It's in his voice, too, suspended between amusement and sudden fascination. "How come you let me be such a shithead, and I still get this at the end? With all my problems. How do I still get you."

“Because you put up with a lot from me too,” Nicole reminds him gently. “You make me put the laptop away every night. You make sure I have dinner. You listen to me rant about anything and everything. You remind me to breathe. To be as kind to myself as I would be to someone I care about.” She smiles, taking in his awe and being gratified by it.

One arm slides out of her dress, then the other, but she still holds the neckline in place, just the peek of thin ivory lace bra straps at her shoulders giving the hint of the risqué. “Take off your pants,” she tells him, eyes drifting from his waist and flitting to the floor. Leave them there, please.

Zachery's response comes after a momentary blank stare, then a chuckle that seems to take him by surprise. "That's right, of course! I knew I was forgetting about something." Belts are much easier than buttons, as it turns out, and it isn't long before he's pushed himself up to stand again, with his thumbs hooked into the last third of his three piece suit.

He just can't help himself.

"Funny thing about the word pants, though." Is the last thing he says before he slides his last two items of clothing off at once, quite nonchalantly - except for the fact that he makes sure never to break eye contact. After he's more or less done as requested, he rises to his full height again and asks, cheerfully, "Better? I think so."

Zachery’s wife giggles and flashes him a cheeky grin. “I know what I said.” For all her earlier embarrassment, there’s no shame in the way she takes him in. It’s different — it always has been for her. As long as she’s calling the shots, there’s no reason to be mortified. It’s when she’s not in the driver’s seat and she gets caught off guard that she starts to turn as red as a traffic signal.

“Perfect,” she commends. He hears what she says next, but also doesn’t for the rush of blood in his ears when she lets the dress fall from her shoulders and down to her waist. More ivory lace and thin microfiber stretch make up the bra that is far more comfortable than anything he knows her to wear literally any other day of her life. Not a wire in sight on that thing.

The still-hidden swell of her belly keeps the dress from falling all the way to the floor while she reaches behind her back and unclasps the two hooks over her spine. That garment is tossed in his direction as well. She points at his now pants-less region with one finger and smirks. “That’s what I wanted to see.” He’s not the only one who can play this game, darn it.

The sight is apparently captivating enough that Zachery momentarily forgets to respond. But when Nicole's comment belatedly registers, he gives a one-shouldered shrug, all before looking into her eyes again. He stifles a chuckle while answering, "Good to know the tequila didn't completely fuck me." Apparently shame is hard to come by, today.

Leaning forward to start closing the distance, he steps deliberately over and not on top of their shedded costumes of the day, his face lifting as he grins and says, simply, "Speaking of."

Nicole lifts her hand quickly, keeping her finger extended so that she creates extra space between the two of them when his chest meets the tip of her nail. “Ah-ah-ah! Not so fast!” She waves him back toward the bed. “I’m not done yet.” She’s having way too much fun to ruin the finale now.

The outward twitch of Zachery's grin is born of both of sincere amusement and pain at once. He closes both eyes, tilts his head even further up, and says, dramatically, "… I suffer for you."

And then promptly turns and marches back from whence he came. To his credit, he still kicks aside a pant leg aside rather than stepping on it before he sits back down, spreading his hands. "How's this? Little to the left? No?" This might almost sound like a thinly veiled complaint, if only his enjoyment levels weren't still clearly up.

Her hands are both held up as though she’s framing a shot, squinting one eye shut at Zachery (is that rude? shhhh) as she does. “Better,” Nicole proclaims, dropping her hands to her sides. “Now, where were we? Bracelet, dress, Stechkin…”

Old, new, borrowed…

“Right!” Nicole rocks forward to step away from the desk, pushing her dress down over her hips to land in a red and white pool at her feet. “Something…” Robin’s. egg.



For how unused to real smiles as he is, Zachery certainly seems to be having a hard time forcing this current one away. Even a quiet wheeze of a laugh and a drag of knuckles over his brow does little to extinguish it much.

"And you've had that under that dress and in your head all day," he processes aloud, slowly shaking his head as he fixes her with some errant determined thought knitting his brow. "God, I love you."

All day,” Nicole confirms with a self-satisfied smirk. “Actually, it’s been in my head over a week now.” She’s a planner after all. “Worth the wait, I hope?”

Stepping out of the heap of her dress, she pads across the carpet to where he sits on the bed now, tilting her head as if curious. It’s very deliberately that she reaches up with her left hand to cup his face. The edges of amusement have faded from her, softened into that fondness she has for him.

“Congratulations, Mr. Miller.”

As a rule, Zachery's shoulders relax almost the instant the hand touches his face. He leans into it without thinking, enjoying the gesture for what it is before deciding on something spoken more calmly than anything he's said in this room so far. "It's worth it every day, Mrs. Miller."

If patience could thin out to the point of physically snapping, the sound might nicely complement the pull of his hands suddenly at her ribcage, drawing her into an embrace and onto the bed. "Now c'mere so I can give you yours."

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