I Can Share Too


colette_icon.gif tasha_icon.gif

Scene Title I Can Share Too
Synopsis Being together means being generous — of space, time, sandwiches, and one another's hearts.
Date June 19, 2010

Gun Hill

The sound of music thrumming through the walls of Colette and Tasha's apartment can be heard down the hallway — it's not a concern yet, since there are no actual renters living at Gun Hill, and Tasha would have turned down the volume on Colette's little stereo if that were the case, or listened via her ever-present headphones and iPod. Modest Mouse's "Dashboard" may or may not be clear through the walls, and the lyrics inside the apartment are still rather indecipherable, but that doesn't keep Tasha from singing along as she paints the living room of the small apartment.

Old sheets have been laid down to protect the flooring, as if a few specks of paint could really make the worn carpet or the scuffed wood or the peeling linoleum any worse. The kitchen has apparently already been completed: the cupboards, once a weary looking oak, are now a deep and dark mahogany stain; the walls there are a warm cocoa in hue.

In the living room, Tasha has painted one wall in the same cocoa, while the other three walls are getting a paprika, apparently, given the "testing" streaks of paint on two walls, and the third wall where Tasha works now, one-third done.

Tasha herself is in cut off jean shorts and a plain white T-shirt, her hair in two pigtails with the bangs held back by a red bandana. Red and brown paint smudges her nose and cheek, with speckles here and there on her bare toes and clothing.

A walk down the block to Janettos for a pastrami on rye sandwich has helped give some time to think after what happened this morning. Colette Nichols has had a lot on her mind since she woke up and too many cups of coffee to help accelerate her nerves. The music helps drown out the squeak of the apartment door opening and Tasha's back to that door helps mask the way she leans in sideways, one brow raised and lips pursed into a thoughtful expression.

Taking a wide step into the room, Colette's mannerisms seem drawn out and cartoonish, that purposeful prancing up in sneaking fashion behind Tasha, a white paper bag rolled up in one hand. Colette carefully crouches down and sets it on the floor out of the way before finishing her heel-toe booted creep up behind the painter, then swiftly wraps her arms around Tasha's waist from behind and draws the brunette into a tight embrace, burying her face at the side of her neck and closing her eyes.

"Hey," is a hushed greeting kissed into the side of Tasha's neck, and Colette's embrace lacks none of the enthusiasm or intensity that it normally does.

Lost in the sweep of roller brush from floorboard to ceiling, lost in the unintelligible lyrics of a song that reminds her, now that she can look on the night with some distance, of the night she and Colette bonded when the other saved her life, Tasha is utterly startled by the sneaky approach, not having noticed Colette until the arms are flung around her. She gasps with the instinctive startle reflex, then laughs, already turning in the tight embrace to face Colette so she can respond in kind.

She drops the roller brush just in time before it meets Colette's dark hair, and then both arms wrap around the slightly taller girl, her eyes closing as she breathes in deeply. Only now that Colette is here with her does she realize she hadn't really breathed for the last few hours. Her lungs had performed their perfunctory duties, of course, but part of her was holding a breath she didn't know was there. Now exhaling, the sigh is long and slightly shaky.

"Hey," she whispers back.

"I love you," are three very important words that Colette makes certain are — by and large — the first out of her mouth to Tasha. Brushing her nose under Tasha's chin, Colette sidesteps around the girl with her embrace loosening, just so she can come to stand in front of her, so she can hug her more properly and hold her close. Bare and pale arms wind around Tasha's neck and shoulders, nose touches nose and there's the softest, most gentle and loving kiss that is shared before their foreheads touch and Colette's eyes close.

Letting her arms slide loose just enough, Colette's hands come to rake through Tasha's hair, fingernails lightly gliding across the girl's scalp and warm breath blown across the girl's lips in Colette's sigh. "I missed you… so much." They've only been apart a little while, but sometimes it can feel like forever.

The first response to those words is a soft smile, before Colette's lips meet hers, and she closes her eyes to share the kiss, fingers, spotted with paint as they are, move into Colette's hair, caressing the scalp beneath lightly. She sighs again, this sigh softer, more relaxed, happier already just from the avowal of love that reassures that worry she hasn't given voice to.

When Colette speaks of missing her, she nods, her eyes still closed — they've spent a very few nights apart since they've been together, and none as long as last. With the meeting from Vincent weighing down and worrying her, and the knowledge that Colette was staying with Tamara, Tasha felt more alone than she had ever felt in her life — not that she'd say that to Colette, knowing Colette wears the guilt of a hundred sins she didn't commit, like so many unnecessary layers of clothing.

"Me too," is all she says instead, before realizing that's not an adequate response. "I love you, too, I mean," she adds, knowing Colette needs the words spoken. She punctuates the words with a kiss to the left cheek. "And I missed you, too," she says, a smile curving her lips up as she kisses the right.

There's a hand that comes up, brushes over Tasha's cheek playfully until her fingers curl around behind one ear. "I brought you lunch," comes with a nod of Colette's head over to the rolled up paper bag on the floor nearby. "Hot roast beef sandwich with sauce," her brows go up to emphasize the last word, lips revealing a toothy smile as she unwinds her arms from around Tasha, only to reach out and touch her with one finger on the tip of her nose.

"You eat, I talk," and that sounds like an order as Colette takes a clomping, booted step back and lowers her pointing finger down to the paper bag. "I've… got a lot to talk about, n'after I'm done you'll probably be done eatin' and we can talk about stuff." Her brows furrow together, teeth toy with her lower lip and weight shifts to one foot. "You wanna eat on our bed like we're not supposed to, or up on the roof?"

"Saucy," Tasha says with a laugh, the seeming good mood from the other girl pulling the mirth from her easily. She glances down the hall to the bed, and shakes her head. "It's kinda paint fumey in here, and while I don't think I'll die from breathing it, it's going to make the sandwich taste like paint, and while the colors look good enough to eat, they don't taste it, I'm pretty sure," she decides, extricating herself from Colette's embrace to pick up the bag.

"So roof, I guess," she says, reaching down to flip off the stereo before heading to the door. "Am I in trouble? And are the colors okay? I would have checked, but I got the bug up my butt to just do it, and I didn't wanna bother you to ask something as … you know, stupid as color palettes and if you hate it, I can just redo it, it's no big deal."

There's a wrinkle of Colette's nose as she tilts her head to the side, one brow arching and head turning to look over at the wall. "You're not in trouble…" she offers in a quiet tone of voice, treading ovet the paint dappled sheets as she looks at the unpainted side of the wall Tasha hadn't yet gotten to yet. Her head quirks to the side and she reaches out to touch bare fingertips to the asylum white wall, then closes her eyes and offers a hesitant smile.

It's not hard to imagine what Colette does, if it had to be described in words. The white side of the wall just fades to a different shade, spreading outward from her hand to match the same cocoa color, as if Tasha had finished the room. Colette keeps her hand there, keeps her brows furrowed and asks without turning around, "do you like it?" She turns, just enough to offer Tasha her profile, and prove that she's smiling with her eyes closed. "I think it looks awesome…"

The moment Colette's hand comes away from the wall, a handprint of white bleeds thorugh the wall, then begins to blotchily fade away back to normal colors as the dark-haired teen turns around. "I'm a walkin' talkin' color swatch," Colette says with a crooked smile, backing up with clunky steps towards the apartment door as she holds out one bare arm, hooked as if expecting Tasha to link arms with her.

"Shall we?"

Eyes widen at this new example of Colette's power, and she turns to look at the room, taking in the effect. "That's so cool. Man, you could work at Home Depot or something and show people what stuff would look like," she says with a bubbly grin. "I like it, but is it too conservative? I mean… you know. It might look like something my parents would do… I guess with interior decorating I'm kinda conservative, but I thought we'd do our bedroom in apple green with like, silver and black accents, go kinda more more interesting in there. This is a little more… I donno. Warm and dark — can do red and black and white details, whatever you like."

Realizing she's sort of rambling, a little nervous about this 'stuff' that they have to talk about, Tasha finally shuts her mouth and takes the arm proffered to her by Colette. "Anyway, if you don't like it, let me know. I just kinda had a lot of energy and felt the need to be productive," she adds, glancing down as she lets Colette lead her toward the roof.

"Sh'up, it's wonderful…" Colette says with a smile as she walks with Tasha arm-in-arm out of the apartment into the hall. "I think green's a cute color for our room, 'cause it's not a bad color at all." Knowingly smiling at the comment, Colette squeezes Tasha's arm and leans gently against her, making their side by side walk a little zig-zaggy for a moment. Rounding the hall to the stairs, there isn't far from the fourth floor to get to the roof. Up to the landing between the fourth and fifth floors, Colette tilts her head to the sie and arches a brow, looking askance at Tasa.

"Can the bathroom be pink?" It's a silly question, "I mean— I dunno, I always wanted something like horribly girly for my bathroom, and bubblegum pink seems like the weirdest thing to ever think of anywhere ever. I mean, pink is like the last color anyone thinks about when they think've me." There's a flash of a smile, and Colette lightly taps the side of her head against Tasha's as they reach the fifth floor.

"It ain't nothin' bad that I gotta' talk t'you about…" and she's already starting before they get to the roof, "sjust stuff that I shouldn't decide on my own, 'cause I wanna' know what you think, 'cause it's important and… you deserve to make half the decisions, cause it's our life." There's a squeeze again to Tasha's arm as she starts rounding her way from the fifth floor up the stairs to the roof.

"Pink?" is the shocked echo when Colette makes that request, Tasha's almond-shaped brown eyes widening into round circles. The odd request brings a bright smile to her lips, as does the rest of what Colette has to say — half our life. Another sigh, another held breath is exhaled, before Tasha nods.

"Bubble-gum pink — actually, I think we can make it really cool. Girly and horrible but still cool. Like pink art deco or something, yeah? With like cool overlapping squares and rectangles all in variations of pink, or maybe polka dots, something really out there. Because, really, it's a bathroom, right?" she says.

"I'll let you pick out the colors this time," she adds, perhaps a concession to the fact it's a shared apartment and now a shared life, as Colette just pointed out. She pushes open the final door to the roof access.

Wrinkling her nose, Colette offers a smile and looks out onto the roof with a broad smile. She's never want for sunglasses, eyes wide and smiling despite the blazing golden-orange sun shining brightly in the sky. Her pupils needn't dilate to let a different amount of light in, she simply processes it differently, mitigates glare and light subconsciously. "Pink squares an' stuff sounds awesome," she finally opines, turning on her heels and holding her bare arms out to feel the cool breeze that blows strong over the rooftop, tugging and playing at the fabric of her black tanktop.

Boots scuff across the concrete as Colette walks past the bags of potting soil and loam she'd hauled up here a few days ago, past the scrap lumber and construction tools that have yet to allow everything to take shape. Strolling over to the pair of lawn chairs with their backs to the sun, she crouches down and settles on one, resting her forearms over the knees of camouflage pants.

"Come sit," Colette offers, nodding to the adjacent chair as she lays back against hers, folding her hands over her stomach and crossing legs at her ankles, one booted foot waggling back and forth.

"Don't wrinkle your nose at me — you're the one who said pink," Tasha counters. "We can do rose buds and puppy dogs if you prefer, you know. Or maybe Disney princesses. We can have Sleeping Beauty kickboxing Jasmine or something, just to toughen it up a bit," she quips, though it's her defense mechanism kicking in the closer they get to serious stuff.

Tasha then sits down on the lawn chair, then pulls her legs onto the chair to sit Indian style. She tugs the sandwich out of the paper bag, but just sets still wrapped sandwich on top of the bag on her lap, turning to look at Colette. Her brows tilt toward one another just slightly, revealing she's not as unworried as she'd like to look. She hasn't asked the question she really should have, the moment Colette walked in — How's Tamara?

Fidgeting a little, Colette closes her eyes and feels the sun on her cheeks, feels the cool breeze toussling her hair and relishes the sensation of the light beating down on her and the feeling of the sun. The things she can do on a sunny day, the things that cross her mind, the temptation of her ability swirling around in her mind at the touch of sunlight is almost intoxicating and hard to resist. Letting her mismatched eyes open, Colette lets her head lean to the side, eyes settling on Tasha as a smile crosses her lips in the silence.

"I talked to Tamara… since she's all awake…" Colette avoids mentioning that she knows Tasha was down there in the morning, just leaves that out entirely. "I feel… really bad, about— a lot of things. I don't really know if I understand her as good as I thought, but… but I do know that she was sad, sadder'n I've ever seen her." There's a tightness in Colette's jaw when she looks down to the rooftop between sentences.

"She woke up really briefly the night before the meeting, was all scared and just… I couldn't leave her." It's not easy things to try and explain, and Colette's struggling with words. "I— asked her to move in." Mismatched eyes lift up to Tasha, brows furrowed and teeth worrying at her lower lip. "She told me to ask you first," there's a lopsided smile, Colette always trying to make everyone happy and just leaping into things.

"I— I don't think… I don't know what I saw. What— what we saw." Casting her eyes to the side, Colette's brows furrow and her teeth tug at her bottom lip again. "I… I don't want to push her away."

Tasha watches Colette, smiling at the brief moment Colette soaks up the sun before she leaps into the discussion that Tasha's been dreading. She manages not to drop the smile entirely, nodding a little before bringing her hand to her mouth, to worry away with her teeth at the thumbnail. She nods again, to show she's listening, that she's registered the words, though it takes a longer moment to assemble and consider her words.

"I talked to her, too. She was … nice," Tasha says quietly. She doesn't hate Tamara. She's not even afraid of Tamara — not that Tamara, anyway. She clears her throat, a stalling technique, though she still hasn't unwrapped her sandwich. "I don't know what I saw either. I didn't see her actually… I don't know… I just know I was scared, and that she had a knife," she whispers, staring down at the sandwich.

Tasha glances away, brows furrowing a little more. "To … the building, or the apartment?" This is asked in a smaller voice, ever more uncertain.

"I— " Colette's brows twitch together and her mismatched eyes flick to Tasha, "may— not have… specified." There's a tiny bit of dread there, as if she expects Tamara to have moved in while they're up on the roof and rearranged all their furniture explaining how you liked it better that way in a chipper tone of voice that you can't be mad about. Smiling a bit apologetically, Colette shakes her head slowly, brows furrowed.

"To be honest I don't know. I mean… we do have a two bedroom apartment, and— I know you wanted to do that art studio thing, but we could always do art in the living room, ain't nobody gonna' tell us otherwise." Half joking at that, Colette furrows her brows and lets her head slouch down slightly.

"I get worried about her. I mean… I know she can take care of herself, but I don't really like the thought of her being alone either. I dunno it— it's really complicated. I don't even know how I feel about her anymore except that…" Colette sits forward and brushes her hand over her face. "She means more to me than most everyone in my life except you, my dad and my sister."

Swinging her legs around to come over the side of the lawn chair, Colette turns to face Tasha, folding her hands and resting them between her knees, looking both apologetic and confused all in the same. "I know how I feel about you though, and there's nothing, not anything that's ever going to change how much I love you and— and how much I need you…" there's a hand held out towards Tasha, fingers spreading slowly. "I need your advice."

"We do," Tasha murmurs, in regards to the two-room apartment, and she lifts a hand to wave away the art studio. "No, it's… you don't have to explain. I know how important she is, and you're… besides how you've felt about her, you're also family, too, in a way, and she's… I mean, I don't think there's any way she can work and hold a job, or anything, right? Someone has to look after her, and if it makes you feel better to have her close by instead of at Judah's, then it's what needs to happen."

She bites her lower lip, and gives a shake of her head. "I… God. I know that sounds all mature and like it's no big deal, right? But I don't want to lie and pretend that I'm all that mature and that it isn't a big deal, because…" her eyes tear up a little and she drops them again, reaching for one of Colette's hands and interlacing their fingers, "… because I'm scared, Colette. I don't want her to hurt you, ever, and I … I like her and I want to trust her, but if she hurts you… I'll never forgive myself for being all 'it's no big deal' right now, right?"

She frowns, shaking her head. "Does that make any sense? That it's okay, except if it's not? I… I want it to be okay, and I want us to be okay, and I want her to be okay. More than anything."

Up from her chair, Colette makes the quick switch to sitting at Tasha's side the moment emotion turns glassy in her eyes. Sliding an arm around Tasha, Colette pulls her close and rests her head against Tasha's, her nose pressed lightly into Tasha's ear and a kiss to her cheek. "I'm not going to let that happen…" are the firm words that Colette now has to make reality. "I— I've got somebody I gotta' talk to about it, somebody who knows a lot about visions and God an' stuff," the latter seems like an odd component, "and I think he might be able to help me…"

Nuzzling in close to Tasha, Colette rests her head down on the brunette's shoulder and stays close, reassuringly so even while one of her hands goes to pick open the white paper wrapped of the still warm sandwitch so she can steal a sliver of roast beef from within. "M'not going anywhere, not one bit, so you don't have to worry about me none, okay? I may be a danger magnet, but— but I always come out of it stronger, so— so you know I'll be okay."

The threat of tears is made into reality when Colette comes close, pressing her face against Tasha's. Tears slide down her cheeks, dampening Colette's face as well, though Tasha nods, swallowing hard. "I won't let it happen either. I promised you I wouldn't, and I meant it. I guess … I guess it's good we got some sort of warning, but now that it won't happen that way, it can't happen that way, because we all know how bad that day's gonna be, everything's going to be different — but still, whatever might have caused it to happen, those things might still … I don't know. We just need to make sure it doesn't happen. Somehow."

Tasha teasingly smacks Colette's roast-beef-thieving hand.

She sits up, wiping her eyes, and tilts her head at the mention of God an' stuff. "Joseph, right? They think he had something to do with the event. And … and my dad, he didn't deny that it's probably visions, not just hallucinations, when me 'n' Cat talked to him," she whispers.

"Y— Yeah, Joseph…" Colette's brows furrow together and the dark-haired girl rubs her fingers tigether with a feigned pout at the slap to her hand. Lifting that hand up to Tasha's chin, Colette leans in and kisses her cheek at the track of tears, brushing them away with a motion of her lips. Delicate fingertips glide across Tasha's other cheek and Colette's head shakes slowly, brows touching before her lips kiss the side of Tasha's nose.

Nosing at Tasha's cheek, Colette leans back and lets her lips curl into a genty smile. "It doesn't matter how it happened, all that matters is that we gotta' stop it from happening the way we saw it. We— I'm not gonna' let whatever kind of world that was happen. You know me, when I get my mind set on something…"

Colette lifts her hand up, dangling a piece of meat from Tasha's sandwich between her fingers with a waggle of her brows before popping it in her mouth and cleaning off her fingers. "I get it."

Dark lashes meet wet cheeks as Tasha closes her eyes to those kisses, smiling and basking in the love and reassurance offered by Colette. Her eyes open again as Colette leans away, and Tasha seems less uncertain. She grins at the dramatic pause and the flaunting of stolen luncheon meats. "Yes. You are nothing if not persistent at procuring what you want," Tasha agrees, picking up the sandwich finally to take a bite, chewing it with a smirking mouth.

Swallowing, she licks her lips and wipes her mouth with the back of her hand, before reaching to catch Colette's hand again, swinging it between the two chairs. "And I'm very very glad that you wanted me," Tasha says, less wry and more sweetness in her tone as she smiles.

Playful as it is, Colette takes Tasha's sentiments seriously for just a moment as she wraps an arm around the brunette's shoulder and leans her sleight weight against her, kissing the side of her cheek and whispering, "Always," into her skin as firmly as she possibly can. Colette may not know exactly how she's going to reconcile the things she wants out of her life, but what Sable said to her made her come to a definitive decision, she does know what she wants, she's just going to have to find a way to keep it.

"I also want to have had the foresight to get myself one of those too!" Colette adds playfully, nose wrinkled and lips pressed to Tasha's jawline warmly. "I guess I'll have to make do," she playfully grouses, squeezing tighter and pressing another kiss to Tasha's jaw before breathing out a contented sigh.

"I'm glad you wanted me too."

With another smile, and a quick brush of her hand across her cheeks to dry the remaining tears, Tasha picks up half of the sandwich, neatly cut in two, and hands it to Colette.

"I can share," Tasha says softly, meaning the sandwich of course. But the statement is fitting of much more — their apartment, literally. And more symbolically, the space in Colette's heart reserved for the Important People in her life. And that heart is thankfully much much bigger, metaphorically speaking, than the scant space of their section of the building.

Hefting half of the sandwich up and looking at it, Colette's cheeks color just a touch before she looks up from it, smiling like it means a lot more to her than a little extra lunch would. Bobbing her head in repeated nods, Colette bites down on her lower lip and gives a restrained smile before taking a bite off of the corner of the sandwich and has a hard time chewing for all the smiling and restrained laughing she's trying to hold back.

"I can too…" Colette offers after she swallows, leaning her shoulder against Tasha and resting her head on her shoulder, eyes closing contentedly as she feels the warm rays of sunlight shine dow on them amidst the unfinished mess of the rooftop garden.

"I can too."

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