Indian Summer


colette_icon.gif tasha_icon.gif

Scene Title Indian Summer
Synopsis Indian summers are wonderful when they last, but they — like most things in life — are only temporary.
Date December 31, 2010

The Garden

"If I stare long enough, up at the stars, s'like nothin' bad ever happened… y'know?"

The sky is a canvas if black spread out as far as the eye can see until pine treetops form a periphery around the heavens. Starlight glitters across the night's sky like diamonds strewn across black cloth, wisps of clouds and chimney smoke intermittantly breaking up the otherwise flawless scenery of night.

Laid back on the mossy roof, Colette Nichols stares up at the sky with hands folded behind her back, leather jacket balled up like a pillow behind her. It feels like spring with how warm it is, nearly fifty degrees in the dark of night, minutes to midnight and the end of two-thousand and ten. Mismatched eyes might not see the stars the same way most other people do, but their seemingly fixed nature is what she was referencing earlier in wistful tone.

Turning her head, Colette's bangs swish down over her blind eye as she looks to the only other person on the rooftop of the Garden with her. Tasha Oliver's silhouette is a subtle one against the glitter of the night sky. Laughter and conversation reverberates thorugh the roof beneath her, where Brian, Samara, Koshka and the other Garden residents are enjoying their New Year's eve as best as they can.

"The stars ain't never changed t'me," Colette explains, looking away from Tasha and back up to the sky. "So… s'like nothin' bad ever happened. The riots never came. An' we're just… movin' on in a different direction." Her lips creep up, hesitantly, and as her eyes fall shut she breathes in a deep breath, exhaling it as a relaxing sigh.

"Tasha?" Colette' asks to the sky, though more notably the girl beside her. "Can I tell you a secret?"

It's a night for that.

Dark brown eyes reflect the tiny pinpricks of light in miniature as Tasha stares up, the tiny skyscape in each eye interrupted by long dark lashes that beat down on pale cheeks once every few seconds. "Nothing bad has happened for some of those stars, you know?" she says quietly. "They're so far away — they may be burned out now, and didn't even exist, not really, for the bad things that mankind's done. Just their light."

Her lips curve upward at that — that the light of the stars has outlasted the actual suns' lives has some metaphorical meaning, given the ability of the girl at her side, but she's just perhaps a little tipsy to chase the prettiness of such a conceit.

Her head tips to the side to watch Colette. "You never have to ask."
Thoughtful and sheepish all in one, Colette stares up at the sky in consideration of Tasha's sentiments. A light that survives its source being burned out, it's a hopeful notion. "I've never…" Colette breaks away from the more witful commentary, scooting closer across the roof to lay as close to Tasha as she can. "I've never had anyone t'share New Years with… properly."

There's a furrow of Colette's brows as she turns her attention from the stars, down to Tasha. "Or I never much had the chance to, anyway. Tamara was never 'round for New Years, an' I spent last year with Kaylee and Eric…" there's a lopsided smirk there, followed by an upwards cast of her brows. "So— I mean…" Spending a New Year's Eve with friends sounds like just the right way to spend it. Which, judging from her hesitance, means there's a double meaning.

Looking away from Tasha, Colette closes her eyes and lifts one knee up, tapping her booted foot against the roof lightly. "Never had somebody t'kiss on New Year's…"

Tasha's hand reaches to catch in Colette's hair, finding a lock to tug playfully, affectionately. She rolls a little closer and then over so that she's nose to nose with Colette, one hand planted on the other side of Colette's head as she peers down at her with a grin.

"It's about as auspicious of a beginning for the new year as I can think of," Tasha murmurs, lips moving closer, but not quite touching the other's.

"So weird to think a year ago I didn't know you yet… I can't even remember not knowing you, Colette." She smiles and bumps her head lightly against Colette's forehead, eyes closing as she shakes her head. "I don't think my life really started til I met you."

She lifts her head again. "What time is it? Am I allowed to kiss you before midnight, or is that bad luck?" she says playfully — not like they haven't already during the day, but she doesn't want to interfere with Colette's idea of what a proper New Year's is.

"We…" Colette's cheeks color, the threat of a smile crossing her lips as she leans up to nudge her nose against Tasha's, "could call this a trial run?" One dark brow tucks up beneath her bangs, even as the young woman leans in and presses the gentlest touch of a kiss to Tasha's lips. She unfolds a hand from behind her head, lifting it up to cup at Tasha's cheek, thumb stroking gently there before managing what may be the first honest smile Tasha has seen on Colette in over a month.

"You had a life 'fore me, an' it wasn't a terrible one. You had your mom, your dad, an' all'f this life." Colette's brows furrow together, worry soon replacing her smile. "If— if anything I— " her voice hitches in the back of her throat, emotion betrayed in the glassy qualities of her eyes. "M'sorry…" Colette murmurs, letting her nose trace circles across Tasha's cheek.

"M'sorry for fuckin' up your life, and— and for making you have to— if you hadn't stayed here in New York…" Colette's jaw trembles, her other hand soon joining the last, one now on each side of Tasha's face.

The smile draws a broader one from Tasha, but then the hint of tears in eyes and voice makes the girl scowl, and she taps Colette's nose with an audible tab to reprimand her like one might a kitten. The tap is followed by a sudden and fierce kiss, nothing nearly as sweet as the one Colette gave her moments ago.

Fingers curl in Colette's hair and Tasha's breath quickens before she draws away. "You didn't fuck up my life, Colette. You saved me, more than once, and you helped me with my dad, and I wouldn't be happy any of the time if I wasn't here." Her voice rises a little with the passion of her words, much like it did the first time she got on a soapbox on their first trip together to Staten so long ago. "Sure, things suck sometimes in this city, in the Ferry, but then there are times like this, and they make up for it. A million times over."

Tasha exhales and leans in to kiss again, softer this time. "Got it?"

There's a shiver that runs down Colette's spine at the show of affection, a hushed and shuddering breath that causes the young girl to squirm beneath Tasha's showering of affection and kind words. Her eyes shut, if only because it feels like this may be the one time she can feel truly relaxed in the last several months.

"I love you," still feels awkward in light of the things Colette is planning in secret, but while it is the truth, it just makes the lies she's building up twist in her stomach all the more. Her lips meet Tasha's, a hand at her cheek and one now down at the side of her neck. Silence and affection replaces words, easier to be truthful with them, easier not to mince intentions and actions. She holds the younger brunette close, leans up and into their shared kiss with as much passion and ferocity that Tasha had shared before.

There's a disparity between her affection and her heart right now, and there is simply too much regret and too much doubt to make them one in the same. "I love you," is whispered again, testing how it sounds to her own ears, trying to discern if it's truth she's saying, or comfortable lies.

The answer surprises her.

Tasha settles a little more comfortably against Colette, arms curling under the other's head and legs tangling, curling around Colette's slightly longer limbs.

"I love you," is whispered back, lips brushing up and then down across Colette's before. "And this is just going to be the first New Year's we spend together of a lifetime, okay? This past year — it was bad, really really bad, and I know until we get Judah and Tamara back, this year isn't good, but it will be. We'll get them back. We'll fix things, and we'll be happy." The promises ring a little hollow — after all, they vowed how many times that they would keep Nov. 8 from happening? But they are made ardently. If will alone could make it so…

Tasha kisses Colette's cheek more sweetly and chastely, then adds in a solemn voice, lifting one hand as if making a vow. "It's my new year's resolution. And I'm stubborn, when I want to be."

She settles back down again, hand sliding back beneath Colette's head to cradle it.
Downstairs, the residents of the Garden are cheering and clapping their hands, Koshka's small voice in a tiny cheer joining others. A moment later, the digital watch on Colette's wrist chirps like an electronic cricket, its faceplate lighting up a dull blue-green. There's a faint smile that creeps across Colette's lips, one of her arms squirming beneath Tasha, the other wrapping over her shoulder in an embrace.

Burying her face against Tasha's neck, Colette hides the smile she's wearing with a kiss to the side of her throat, fingers curling in the fabric of Tasha's sweater and breath warm against cool skin. "I wouldn't have you any other way…" Colette whispers into a kiss pressed to Tasha's neck, squeezing the brunette tightly, breathing in the scent of her skin.

"Happy New Year's, Tasha…"

Their first proper New Year's together.

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