FANFIC: Basic Instinct (T) FINISHED AUGUST 1ST!

Games, RP, general Mayhem (within reason, of course)

Moderators: TingYi, anti-paragon, DarkShive

Postby Amon Star on Sat Jul 14, 2007 7:32 am

Heh, heh, heh. All good stuff. I've read Twin Envy & enjoyed it, but this looks to be even better. As the others have said, you have got the characters spot on in my opinion, especially their interplay. I especially loved the bit with Tedd & Elliot, with Tedd's theory being a classic.

So, when the next Chapter?
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Postby CidGregor on Mon Aug 13, 2007 8:09 am

Author's note: IMMENSELY sorry for the huge delay, folks. Life got hectic for a while, including but not limited to Graduating college, starting full-time work, and going through a robbery that cost me about $3000 worth of cash and property, which all in all left me with either no time to write, or no motivation to. I hope that this is an enjoyable enough chapter to make up for it, and I also hope that the next update won't be nearly this long in coming.

As a side note, as you may have heard, Fanfiction.net now has an EGS section. I've begun posting Twin Envy (my first EGS fanfic) there, and, as a special bonus (and for now, exclusively on FFN), I will be posting it with an alternate ending! This alternate ending will be what you might call the 'director's cut,' the original version of the story script I had planned out before I axed a bunch of it for the sake of maintaining the highest level of in-character-ness as possible. Look for it soon.

And now without further stalling--I mean, ado, It's time to continue "Basic Instinct."

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Basic Instinct

Chapter Three: Blue-eyed Blonde


“Hey, uh, Tedd?”

Tedd glanced up from the table, where a moment earlier he had been staring blankly at his lunch. “Hm?”

Elliot looked curiously across the lunch table at him. “You feeling okay, man?”

“Yeah, why?”

“Well, aside from the fact that you’ve been staring holes in your lunch for the last ten minutes…”

“And that you haven’t insulted my chest,” Sarah added.

“Or cracked any perverted jokes,” Susan murmured.

“…Well, I guess we were just a bit concerned that you weren’t yourself, is all,” Elliot finished.

“I just didn’t feel like cracking dirty jokes today, alright?”

“…Yeah, exactly,” Elliot said. “You never ‘don’t feel like it.’ It’s, like, your thing.”

“Okay, fine. Sarah, hit puberty and grow a chest, Susan, you should start a Naked Fridays movement. Happy?”

Elliot glanced beside him at Sarah and raised an eyebrow, but she looked just as confused as he did. “Uhh…Tedd?”

Tedd, however, returned to staring at his lunch.

“What’s his deal?” Susan wondered.

Elliot watched him for a long moment, and eventually looked at the girls. “Hey, would you two mind…?”

Susan shrugged. “Whatever. C’mon, Sarah.”

Elliot gave his girlfriend an encouraging nod, and after a moment of hesitation Sarah nodded back and followed Susan in standing up and moving to another area of the cafeteria with their lunches. With just him and Tedd left, Elliot scooted closer and lowered his voice below the general din of the student body. “You wanna tell me what’s really up?”

“Nothing that concerns you,” Tedd answered cryptically.

“Is it about Grace?”

Tedd said nothing.

“It’s about Grace, isn’t it?”

“I said it doesn’t concern you.”

“Tedd, come on, I came to you about the whole fighting with Sarah thing. We can talk about this stuff, can’t we?”

“…I guess.”

“So talk to me.”

“Ugh…Fine, if you’ll shut your trap…” Tedd muttered. “…Y’know how I said I was glad school’s back ‘cause Grace would be happier for it?”

“Uh-huh?”

“Yeah, well, she’s not. Not exactly.”

“She still mopey?”

“Not mopey. She’s better than she was before school started again, but she…I dunno, she was distant yesterday.”

“…Didn’t seem that way when I saw her,” Elliot said.

“I mean after that,” Tedd amended. “She was fine for maybe that half-hour or so. But then we took a nap together, and when I woke up she’d gone upstairs without me, and she barely looked at me all night.”

Elliot frowned a little. “Why would she do that?”

Tedd flushed a little. “I’m half-afraid I offended her…”

“…How?”

“I really don’t want to talk about it.”

“That doesn’t help me, Tedd.”

“Tough.”

“Oh come on, it can’t be that bad. It’s not like she walked in on you with a dirty magazine or anything.” Elliot paused. “…did she?”

“No,” he insisted. “…Probably just as bad though…”

“…Uhh…”

Tedd sighed and gave up. “I’m afraid maybe I….I dunno…that I might’ve groped her or something in my sleep.”

Elliot processed that for a moment with minimal wincing at the mental image. “Well…if that’s what happened…I’m sure Grace wouldn’t be that upset about it. I mean, you were asleep. You can’t exactly be held responsible for sleepwalking…or sleep-groping, or whatever. You’re not in control of yourself.”

“That doesn’t make it okay,” Tedd countered.

“…I suppose, but…well, you certainly aren’t going to change anything either way unless you talk to her and apologize. Might not even take that much. For all you know she’s just embarrassed about having dirty dreams or something.”

“Grace? Having dirty dreams?”

“…okay, so that might not be the best example, but still. It could just be her own issue, not anything you did.”

“I guess…” Tedd trailed off. “It’s just she usually talks to me about everything…”

“Everyone’s entitled to secrets. You can’t be involved in every single detail of her life.”

“This is different. Like she’s…afraid to talk to me now.”

“…Tedd, that doesn’t make any sense.”

“I know it doesn’t.” Tedd sighed. “And that’s why I’m worried…”

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

“…so I told the guy to buzz off, but I swear he would NOT shut up and leave me alone,” Ellen was saying, though Grace only very distantly heard her, despite being side by side. “And THEN he tried to put his arm around me. So finally I just decked the guy.”

“Jeez, Ellen, that sucks,” came Justin Tolkiberry’s sympathetic response, again distant to Grace’s ears.

Ellen meanwhile rolled her eyes in annoyance. “I swear, Justin, you’re like the only decent guy I’ve met at this school so far.”

Justin smiled a bit embarrassedly and rubbed the back of his head. “Heh…I’m flattered.”

“Almost makes you agree with Susan’s anti-male ramblings sometimes,” Nanase chimed in with a smirk.

“Haha, yeah, I know, right?” Ellen chuckled. “Maybe we should get Tedd to turn Justin into one of the girls again, eh, Grace?”

“……”

“Grace?”

“……”

“Grace!”

“Huh…?” Grace murmured distractedly.

Ellen glared at the girl beside her. “Okay, this is getting ridiculous. You’ve done nothing but space out every other minute for two solid days now. Are we boring you?”

Grace shook her head slowly. “No, no, nothing like that…just had a lot on my mind.”

“Well get it off your mind, you’re starting to weird me out! What happened to giggly cheery bouncing off the walls FUN Grace?”

“I’m still here! I told you, I just have stuff on my mind!”

“C’mon, Ellen, lay off her…” Justin said.

Grace was pretty sure he said more, and that the others carried on the conversation with him, but Grace had stopped listening again, returning to her own troubled thoughts. That dream the night before had gotten to her more than even she herself had first realized.

Why had she dreamed that? She’d never thought that way about anyone before, not even Tedd. Or at least not with that level of detail, or anywhere in the immediate future. It was always such a distant thought. She was completely content with hugging and snuggling and kissing, she had no desire yet to move the relationship to that level, did she?

No, of course she didn’t. It had to have been a fluke, just like the weird moments of attraction to Justin and Elliot. Ellen had put bad thoughts in her mind that somehow stuck there, that had to be it. That was when it had started, after all, wasn’t it? When Ellen had made those crude comments about her and Tedd? Yes, that had to be the explanation…

Having momentarily convinced herself of this, she looked up from her musings to rejoin the conversation, only to find that her pace had slowed considerably, and her friends had walked well ahead of her without her noticing. She let out a quiet squeak and jogged to catch up with them as they rounded a corner, but as soon as she too turned the corner she found herself crashing straight into a warm body and toppling forward on top of it.

“Waahhh!”

“Huh—whoa!”

WHAM!

“Owies…” Grace murmured as she and the unfortunate victim of her haste hit the floor roughly, Grace lying dazedly atop the other person.

“You alright there, miss?” the figure asked, a soft, soothing male voice.

Grace looked down into the face of her victim. His hair, though disheveled in the fall, was no less eye-catching, a smooth, wavy blonde ‘do that hung past his ears. His strikingly blue eyes shone with concern as he looked as her, and his lips were certainly forming words, but Grace was staring at them too much to notice.

“Miss? Hello? Are you okay?”

“Huh? O-oh! I-I’m fine, thank you. I should be asking you that, actually…”

“Oh, don’t worry about me, I take worse hits than that all the time,” he said, smiling up at her. “I would like to get up in the near future, though…”

“Oh, yes, of course, sorry!” Grace said quickly and scrambled to her feet to help him up, instantly blushing at how strong his grip was and how toned his body seemed to be. “I, um, I’m really sorry, I was in a hurry to catch my friends and I wasn’t watching where I was going and--”

“Hey, no worries, I’m fine,” he assured her with a smile, and gave her a curious look. “Hey, you’re that new girl. Grace, isn’t it?”

Grace blinked in surprise. “You know me?”

The boy chuckled, a friendly and calming sound to Grace’s ears. “Well, you’re kinda hard to miss. I don’t think I’ve ever seen someone quite as excited as you to be at school, of all things. Most people can’t stand being in this place any longer than necessary. I know I sure feel that way sometimes, heh…”

“Really? But school is so fun!”

“Heh, well, maybe you’re a kid, yeah…most of us get burnt out by middle school, though. But hey, if you like it, more power to you.” He smiled, flashing very nice teeth.

“H-hehe…” Grace smiled back. “Well, you know me, but I don’t think I know you…”

“Alex,” the boy offered promptly. “Running back for the football team.”

“…but you’re standing still.”

“…Pardon?”

“You said you were running back to your, um…foots ball team? But you’re standing still.”

“Oh, no, I meant my position on the team is running back.”

“…Erm…”

“…You don’t know much about sports, huh?”

“No, I guess not…” she admitted, a bit embarrassed suddenly at this hole in her knowledge.

“Well hey, no worries, I can help ya learn, if you want.”

Her eyes lit up instantly. “Yeah! I love learning!”

“Heh, no wonder you love school, then.”

“Oh totally! I wanna learn everything I can! You really don’t mind teaching me?”

“Not at all. Always happy to make a new fan.”

“Cool! I wanna know all about sports and foots ball!”

Alex chuckled again, that sound that was so pleasant to Grace’s ears. “It’s ‘football,’ actually…”

“Football,” she repeated. “And football is…?”

“It’s a sport. A game.”

Her eyes widened even more, if that was possible. “Game?.! I love games! Can I play?.!”

Alex laughed outright this time. “Hey, hey, slow down, girl, one thing at a time. Worry about how to play first…”

“Okay!” she said, no less excited. “So how do you play?”

“Well,” he said, pulling a brown and white object from his backpack that looked like a pointed oval, “it all starts with this. The football…”

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

“…so at the end of the four quarters, you add up all the touchdowns and field goals and so on, and whichever team scored the most points wins. Simple.”

“It sounds dangerous!” Grace said concernedly. “Do people get hurt a lot?”

“Well, now and then, yeah, sometimes,” Alex admitted, “but there’s all kinds of safety rules and protective gear to keep it from happening very often.”

“Have you gotten hurt before?”

“Oh, never anything serious. A few bumps and bruises, tops.”

Grace gave him an almost admiring look. “You must be really brave to risk that all the time…”

“Aww, it’s no big deal,” he said modestly. “Hey, listen, it’s time for my next class, but if you wanna learn about it in more detail we can talk some more later…maybe at lunch?”

“Y-yeah, sure, I’d like that!”

“Cool. I’ll see you there, then.”

“O-okay! Bye, Alex!”

The boy waved at her as he walked into a nearby classroom, leaving Grace with an odd, warm glow that was sharply chilled by a hand clapping on her shoulder.

“All right, way to go, Grace!” she heard Ellen snicker.

“H-huh?” she said, startled, almost as though snapping out of a daze.

Ellen appeared in front of Grace a moment later, laughing jovially. “I tell ya, I’ve seen some flirting in my time, and I’ve even done some myself, but I have to hand it to you, Grace, that was some top-notch, Grade-A flirting.”

Grace’s eyes bulged.

“You really gotta show me some of those moves, girl. I had no idea you were such a natural. ‘Ooh, you’re soooo brave…’ Wow, that…just wow, talk about a classic move made deadly…” Ellen laughed again and clapped Grace’s shoulder. “You are definitely the master of flirting…”

Grace remained frozen, however.

“…Uh, Grace…?”

Grace’s expression suddenly became horrified.

“Grace?”

“I was WHAT?.!”

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Comments and critiques are appreciated, as always.
Last edited by CidGregor on Wed Feb 27, 2008 12:28 am, edited 1 time in total.
"Nice guys finish last......but only because we have farther to go." - Lord Belgarion

"Lesbians are Neato!" - Tedd Verres

My EGS Fanfiction:
Twin Envy, ALTERNATE ENDING ADDED APRIL 23RD '08!
Basic Instinct, COMPLETED AUGUST 1ST '08!
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Postby Amon Star on Mon Aug 13, 2007 9:30 am

First off, no need to apologies about the delay. Also, I'm sorry that things have been so rough for you lately. I hope they sort them selves out.

Anyway, great Chapter. That is SO Grace, even without the 'mating instinct' or whatever it may be. I can so TOTALLY see her accidentally flirt with someone & not realise it. I can also see Ellen teasing her about it.

Also, I like the way Tedd is acting too. He would get all paranoid & moody. You are totally spot on with capturing the characters. At least in my opinion.

Anyway, I hope to see more soon. :D
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Postby CidGregor on Tue Aug 14, 2007 6:52 am

Thanks, much appreciated. I hope to get the next one started very soon.
"Nice guys finish last......but only because we have farther to go." - Lord Belgarion

"Lesbians are Neato!" - Tedd Verres

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Basic Instinct, COMPLETED AUGUST 1ST '08!
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Postby Aranfan on Tue Aug 14, 2007 7:12 am

You have an excellent grasp of the characters Cid.
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Postby Illusionist on Tue Aug 14, 2007 7:37 am

Glad to see you back! No need to rush the next chapter, take as long as you need.
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Postby A Fan on Tue Aug 14, 2007 8:14 am

Yes! It doth return! And what's this about ff.net having an EGS section? I may have to dust off that account of mine...
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Postby CidGregor on Wed Aug 15, 2007 6:54 am

Heh, yeah, you just might. It's not very big yet, so any contribution you make to it would be significant. ^_^ Thanks for reading.
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"Lesbians are Neato!" - Tedd Verres

My EGS Fanfiction:
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Basic Instinct, COMPLETED AUGUST 1ST '08!
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Postby Atashi-Cloud on Wed Aug 15, 2007 6:58 am

Hmmm....I've liked the story thus far, and just want to add on to the Kryptonian saying of 'MOOOORE'...^^;
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Postby eman on Thu Nov 29, 2007 6:40 pm

[bump]
Is it can be updates tiem now plees?
[/bump]

I just found this and very much enjoyed reading it so far! Please update soon!
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Postby CidGregor on Fri Dec 28, 2007 8:03 pm

Author's notes: Wow. That was way too long of a dry spell. All my old readers probably lost interest by now, heh. Well, for what it's worth, I'm sorry for the long downtime, and I will try to be more dilligent about it in the coming weeks. I already have the next chapter planned out, so I really hope to get it up soon. Crossing my fingers!

So, without further ado, more fic!

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Basic Instinct

Chapter Four: Discomfort Zone

For all the strange goings-on that had become practically the norm in Tedd’s life, somehow the dinner table had never managed to be an awkward thing. Lonely, perhaps, after the departure of his mother. Formal, sure, when they had Nanase’s family over on the occasional holiday. And certainly silly at Grace’s birthday party, with everyone gender-swapped and at least on some level enjoying it. But never awkward.

This, however, Tedd was sure, was the definition of an awkward dinner table. Other than the scraping of forks and knives, and the occasional tobacco-laced cough from his father, there wasn’t a sound. His dad wasn’t particularly talkative at dinner in the first place, so that part wasn’t anything odd, but the complete silence from Grace was extremely unnerving. Her eyes never left her plate, which she only picked and nibbled at, and she barely spoke two words. Not for Tedd’s lack of trying either. He’d tried no less than three times to strike up a conversation with her about something, anything, and each time she would turn slightly pink, give the most minimal answer possible and then fall silent again. It was seriously strange behavior. Even his dad had to have noticed it, even if he didn’t say anything about it.

“So, Grace,” he attempted once more, “making any new friends at South?”

Her reaction this time varied only slightly, in that she turned a slightly deeper shade of pink before murmuring, “A couple…” and falling silent again.

Tedd didn’t give up quite so easily this time. “Tell me about them. Did you meet them on your own or did the gang introduce you?”

“O-on my own…” Grace murmured again, and suddenly stood up. “May I be excused?”

“Of course, Grace,” Mister Verres said before Tedd could insist otherwise. “Don’t forget to wash your plate.”

Grace nodded silently and gathered her plate and silverware, darting into the kitchen without a peep further.

The instant she was gone Tedd rounded on his father in a harsh whisper. “How can you just let her run off like that when there’s obviously something wrong?.!”

“I had assumed you and her were in the middle of a fight of some sort,” he answered matter-of-factly. “I didn’t see fit to prolong the awkward moment any further.”

Tedd froze up at that. “…You think she’s mad at me?”

“The silent treatment IS a rather common technique used against someone who the user is angry with.”

“But…why would she be mad at me? I haven’t done anything! Have I?”

“Have you?” his father countered, looking curiously at him.

“I…I don’t think so…” Tedd said uncertainly, “unless…”

“Unless?” his father probed.

Suddenly his fears from earlier that afternoon rose up forefront in his mind again. HAD he done something inappropriate in his sleep without knowing it that afternoon? She hadn’t been the same since that afternoon, after all, the timeframe fit…maybe he DID grope her…or worse

“Tedd?”

“…I need to talk to her…”

“Good idea,” his father sagely agreed. “Go on, I’ll clean up dinner.”

“Thanks,” Tedd replied, and hurried toward the kitchen, but Grace had already left. He strode instead toward her room, and softly knocked on the door. “Grace?”

No answer.

“…Grace, can I talk to you? Please?”

“…I’m doing homework,” came her quiet reply.

Tedd didn’t relent. “Grace, please. It’s important.”

“……”

“Grace? C’mon, Grace, please don’t be mad at me...”

The door suddenly opened, and Grace peeked out at him in mild surprise. “…What makes you think I’d be mad at you?”

Tedd rubbed the back of his head, pink-faced. “You just…haven’t been the same since yesterday afternoon after that nap, and I…well, I was afraid that I might have done something a little…inappropriate…”

“Inappropriate? Like what?”

Tedd’s cheeks resembled tomatoes now. “U-um…like…t-touching you, in…places…”

Grace blushed right back. “O-oh, no, no no no, Tedd, of course not!” she said hurriedly. “You didn’t do anything like that at all!”

Tedd’s relief was instant and immense. “Oh thank god…” he said after a deep breath. “I thought you were pissed at me…stupid dad making me paranoid…”

“No, no, Tedd, you didn’t do ANYTHING wrong,” Grace assured him again.

“Glad to hear it,” Tedd said with a smile, but it faded a minute later. “But…if I didn’t do anything, then…what’s wrong?”

The pink in Grace’s face doubled. “N-nothing, really…”

“Grace, you’ve been a whole different person the last twenty-four hours and it’s worrying me. I can tell something’s wrong, Grace, just…please, tell me.”

Grace seemed to battle with something inside her head for a long time, her fingers fidgeting nervously as she thought, but Tedd waited patiently. He was getting to the bottom of this, right here and now.

“…It’s just that I…” Grace began, and Tedd was surprised to see her eyes suddenly swimming with emotion and her body almost trembling, like she was on the verge of divulging some horribly bloody secret.

“Grace…? Come on, Grace, hon, whatever it is, you can tell me…” Tedd assured her with a gentle stroke of his hand over her cheek.

It was almost as though a dam broke at his touch, and before he even realized what had happened Grace’s arms were tight around his torso and she was sobbing into his shoulder.

“G-Grace?.!”

Ohh Tedd, I’m such a bad person, I’m so sorry, I flirted with another boyyyy!!” she wailed.

For a second, Tedd was sure he’s misheard her. Grace, flirting with someone…else? No…no, that was ridiculous…wasn’t it…?

“Grace, honey, shh…shh, calm down…calm down and start from the beginning, okay? Slower...”

Grace composed herself after a minute, just enough to tell him the whole story about bumping into Alex the football player and making friends with him and learning all about football and how she’d been so happy to make a new friend until Ellen came along and pointed out the so-called ‘Grade-A flirting’ that had ultimately left her in her current fit of hysterics.

“…and I didn’t even know I was doing it, I swear, but Ellen said it was, and I felt so horrible I couldn’t even look you in the eye anymore, ohh Tedd, I’m so sorrryyy!.!.!” she wailed sadly, sobbing and sniffling still but otherwise falling silent, and it was all Tedd could do at the moment to slowly rub her back and soothe her with his embrace, because in his head a war was raging.

‘Grace…flirting…with other guys…?’ Half of him thought in horror and fear. ‘No, not just any other guy, a FOOTBALL player…!’

It’s not that bad, the other half of him tried to rationalize. It was an accident, she didn’t mean anything by it.

‘Oh god, oh god, I can’t compete with that,’ his weaker half fretted, ‘oh god, she’s gonna like him better, I just know it…’

She will not, she loves you, the second voice insisted.

‘Not for long…she’ll fall for the muscle hunky football player, I just know it…’

She will not fall for him! Remember what Elliot told you the first day back after the party! She loves YOU!

‘Not anymore she won’t,’ the small, fearful voice sobbed. ‘Face it, she found someone BETTER, it was inevitable, there’s a whole SCHOOL full of guys way better than me, it was never going to last—

For god’s sake, GET A HOLD OF YOURSELF! the second half nearly shouted at him, making Tedd hold Grace tighter. LOOK at the girl! She’s in tears because she thinks she CHEATED on you, and all she did was TALK to a guy! She didn’t even KNOW she was flirting! This isn’t about YOU, you selfish prick, it’s about HER needing reassurance and guidance from her BOYRFRIEND, so for the love of Christ grow a freaking backbone!

‘……’

The small voice was quieted. And Tedd knew which one to listen to.

“Grace…it’s okay, sweetheart…it’s okay…listen to me…”

Grace looked up at him with shining eyes. “Please forgive me, Tedd, I--Mpphh!”

Tedd silenced her with a single finger to her lips. “Grace. Listen to me. You didn’t do anything wrong, you understand me…?”

“But Ellen said--”

“I don’t care what Ellen said. You didn’t do anything wrong. Ellen can think you were flirting all she wants, but you didn’t mean it. You weren’t trying to flirt and you didn’t WANT to flirt, and as far as I’m concerned that means you were NOT flirting.”

“I wasn’t…?”

Tedd shook his head. “Absolutely not. You were just…trying to make a new friend. And that’s perfectly okay. It’s good to make friends. I’m sure this…Alex guy’ll make a great friend…and you shouldn’t feel guilty about just talking to him.”

“Really…?”

Tedd nodded and gripped her shoulders firmly. “I love you, Grace. And I TRUST you. I know you would never do anything to intentionally hurt me. You don’t have anything to be sorry for. Not a single thing.”

“But--”

“Not. A single. Thing.”

“…Tedd…”

Tedd wiped her eyes dry, smiling. “Now quit crying and kiss me, ‘cause it’s been a full day since the last one and I’m starting to suffer withdrawal.”

He didn’t need to ask twice. A tearful laugh burst out from her, followed almost immediately by a wide, relieved smile, and before he knew it he felt her lips on his again, and for the longest time he simply held that kiss, quiet and loving, catching up on the lost day, and the stronger voice in his head, if it had a mouth, was smiling its approval.

But the smaller voice…

No. It was wrong.

It HAD to be wrong…

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

“…And after ALL that, you guys STILL didn’t do it?.!”

“Ellen, you can keep asking her that, but the answer’s not gonna be any different,” Nanase pointed out. “A talk like that would be overwhelming enough, there’s no need to compound it with sex, too.”

“But still!” Ellen insisted. “That’s like the most romantic speech ever! Girl’s MELT over that stuff!”

“We do not,” Nanase countered.

“Oh, now you’re just in denial!”

“Guys, really, it’s not a big deal!” Grace chimed in suddenly, halting the impending argument with her broad smile. “I’m fine now, everything’s figured out! Tedd and I are great!”

“…but you HAD to have at LEAST--”

“Ellen, really, we didn’t do anything,” Grace insisted. “Can you please let it go? That’s what got me all weird in the first place.”

Ellen seemed to want to open her mouth and keep going, but she finally decided against it and gave it up, and for that Grace was quite grateful. She’d just fixed things with Tedd the night before, and she didn’t want Ellen putting bad ideas in her head and starting the whole process all over again.

“So what are we doing here, anyway?” Nanase asked into the silence, looking at their surroundings and seeing that Grace had led them into the cool metal bleachers outside of the school, overlooking the football field.

“I told Alex I’d come watch him practice after school today!” Grace said excitedly. “He said it helps to understand all the rules in foots ball if you watch it in person!”

“Wait, you’re still talking to him after that whole freak-out?” Ellen asked in surprise.

“Of course!” Grace answered. “Tedd said it was great that I was making friends!”

“…points to Tedd for not getting jealous,” Nanase murmured under her breath to Ellen, who got a snicker out of it.

Grace paid neither response much attention, though. Her eyes were already scanning the football field, taking in all the sights Alex had told her about, from the big block numbers on the grass to the towering goal posts behind each endzone. And huddled over on the field itself in two lines of differently-colored shirts was the Moperville South football team, currently engaged in a scrimmage.

“There he is, right there! He said he wears a shirt with a big number twenty-eight on it!” Grace squealed. “HI ALEX!”

The only sound she could hear back was a stylized grunting from the boy standing beside Alex. A second later, lots of things happened all at once and very fast. The strangely-shaped ball was suddenly fired out from somewhere within the men lined up and landed in the boy’s hands, and almost instantaneously afterward the two lines crashed into each other, shoving and grunting, while the boy who caught the ball handed it to Alex. With surprising speed considering how much gear seemed to be weighing him down, he charged forward through a hole in the two lines, and had run past several of the large numbers before a pair of boys in the other shirt colors caught up to him and tackled him to the ground.

Grace heard Ellen distantly mumble something about an impressive run, but she was far too overrun with concern suddenly to pay it any attention. Was that how the game always was? It looked so…dangerous and violent. Half of her was afraid he wasn’t going to get up again.

But then the two other boys let go of Alex and helped him jump right back to his feet, jovially patting each other on the back and none of them apparently any worse for the wear, and a second later the beefy balding man at the other end of the field blew his whistle and Alex came jogging toward the bleachers.

“Hey, Grace, you made it!” Alex said with a smile as he reached her and took off his helmet, and Grace again couldn’t help admiring his handsome facial features, but it was okay to do that because she wasn’t flirting, Tedd said so.

“Are you okay, Alex?” Grace said worriedly. “That looked like it hurt!”

“Ah, I’m fine, that’s what all these pads and stuff are for,” he assured her, gesturing at the large helmet and shoulder pads. He smiled at her, and then at the other two girls. “Friends of yours?”

“Oh, yeah, this is Ellen and Nanase!” Grace hurriedly introduced them. “We’re great friends!”

“Cool,” Alex said with a nod at the other two girls, who smiled back but didn’t say anything. “So, Grace, you and your friends wanna come to a movie?”

“Sure, I love movies!” she responded eagerly and rounded on the other two girls. “You guys wanna come?”

“Sorry, parents don’t let me do anything fun until homework’s done…” Nanase griped.

“You go ahead,” Ellen insisted, “I’m gonna help Nanase.”

Alex shrugged and smiled at Grace. “Guess it’s just us, then.”

Grace was undaunted. “That’s okay, we can talk and stuff and get to know each other!” she offered, because that was normal when you made new friends and definitely not flirting.

“Heh, sounds good,” Alex said, offering his arm. “Shall we?”

“Sure!” Grace said, running forward to take his arm, which was totally okay, she told herself, because she was definitely not flirting. “Bye Nanase, bye Ellen!”

In a flash she was gone, leaving Ellen and Nanase to give each other identical odd looks.

“…Is it just me, or was she acting like a total smitten kitten?” Ellen voiced the thought first.

“If she had her tail right now it’d be wagging like a puppy’s,” Nanase agreed. “Something’s not right here…”

“…it’s probably nothing. You know how Grace is sometimes. Besides, she’d never seriously CHEAT on TEDD. Right?”

“…Yeah…” Nanase slowly agreed, “you’re probably right…”

But as logical as it sounded, neither girl seemed completely satisfied with the answer. Somehow they knew it just couldn’t be that simple…

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Comments and critiques are, as always, welcomed and appreciated.
Last edited by CidGregor on Wed Feb 27, 2008 12:30 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby eman on Fri Dec 28, 2007 8:20 pm

HOORAY! More fanfic!
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Postby Amon Star on Sat Dec 29, 2007 6:39 am

eman wrote:HOORAY! More fanfic!
SECONDED!!!1! And MOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOORE!!!1! Oh Grace & Tedd are in for a world of hurt. As is Alex, in a way.
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Postby AYBABTU_Sir on Sat Dec 29, 2007 9:52 am

Ah, Tedd with paranoia. Just just has to led him off a cliff somehow with Tedd spotting Alex & Grace together, or some more rumors. I can't plainly tell, but it will drive Tedd to INSANITY. Or make him sprout a sixth toe. I 'm not in a state of mind to do some proper speculating.

Oh, and amazing chapter CidGregor. I loved the inner struggle dialogue in Tedd's head, with the proverbial slap in the face voice.
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Postby A Fan on Sat Dec 29, 2007 1:27 pm

The above three statements perfectly reflect my opinions. Especially Amon's. Looking forward to the next installment, whenever it arrives.
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Postby Kraggi on Sun Dec 30, 2007 12:02 am

Two words sum up my reaction after the initial joy at it existing.

Oh NOES!
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Postby Helseth on Fri Jan 04, 2008 5:18 am

Great to see it revived. Can't wait for more.
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Postby CidGregor on Fri Jan 04, 2008 8:54 am

Thanks for sticking with it, everybody, glad to see the interest is still strong. Next chapter should come sooner rather than later.
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Postby A Fan on Fri Jan 04, 2008 11:22 am

Huzzah!

*begins using copious amounts of party favors and noisemakers*
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Postby DracoDracul on Fri Jan 04, 2008 8:40 pm

I don't think I can really add anything that hasn't already been said, but I will readerate that you do a very good job of maintaining canom characterizations, and this fic seems like its even better than your first, which was really good.
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Postby Atashi-Cloud on Fri Jan 04, 2008 10:24 pm

Oh wow...it's back, and after a long absence too.^^;

and you have definitely improved upon your writing talents, CG. Keep it coming and I'm sure you'll find more readers springing up.
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Postby AYBABTU_Sir on Mon Jan 14, 2008 11:44 pm

*AYBABTU_ Sir casts Thread Ressurection +4. The Tread is completely revived, at the cost of several Credibility points*

CidGregor, just wondering the status of the next chapter. Done is good, halfway is good, got wasted throughout the entire holiday and woke up in a French veterinary clinic, matters not.
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Postby A Fan on Tue Jan 15, 2008 10:41 am

Mind you, a Belgian veterinary clinic...
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Postby CidGregor on Mon Feb 18, 2008 4:49 pm

Okay, well, this wait was less than before, but still a little too long for my tastes. Still trying to speed things up. Oh well.

In any case, enjoy the new chapter, and I hope to cut down the wait time even further next time.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Basic Instinct

[i]Chapter Five: Nightmares & Dreamscapes
"Nice guys finish last......but only because we have farther to go." - Lord Belgarion

"Lesbians are Neato!" - Tedd Verres

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Basic Instinct, COMPLETED AUGUST 1ST '08!
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Postby A Fan on Mon Feb 18, 2008 6:11 pm

Bum bum BUUUUUUM!

The plot thickens. Now, stir every ten minutes until the plot assumes a meringue-like consistency, then lower heat to 210
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