Saturday, September 17, 2016

Pity Party

"Pity Party"
orig. 3/24/2011
Elly x Sanji (mundane universe)
Innuendo, PG-13
Anime/Manga: ONE PIECE


Elly averted her eyes. It was the day of his birthday and Sanji was having a huge party, so naturally the fuss started the moment he woke up. Everything had to be perfect! She watched as he dashed about the condo they lived in. He was clad only in white, blue-striped boxers and unabashed as usual. At the moment he was fussing over the room decorations with their other female room mate who was trying to help.

Why she had agreed to live in this situation - one man and two ladies, neither one "going out" with him -- well, that was easy. She needed help with the rent, one, and two: she was madly in love with the man. The other woman in this scenario had never really been a friend, but she tolerated her out of necessity.

I bet they've slept together, Elly thought dismally. She had no basis for the fact except Sanji was always catering to her like he did all beautiful women. And of course she had a low opinion of the girl anyway; she'd sleep with anything anyway. Elly wrinkled her nose when she thought of the guys she'd seen her come home with. She used to be pleasant enough towards her, giving her a ride to work now and then. She had given up halfway through the first year when the other woman had left her stranded at a mall.

No, the best friend she had was the one she was in love with.


She was ignored throughout the morning while the rooms were decorated, though she tried to help by offering to put up the balloons and more. She was just in the way and she finally settled for sitting in a chair in a corner while the two scurried about, greeting guests and whatnot. The situation seemed simple, but it was crushing her. Elly swallowed hard, closing her eyes as she did so. Her mind was filled with flames and a seething self-pity that she tried to squash to no avail. She felt bad for herself. There he was - the guy she wanted, the one she was in love with -- and here she was: fat, unattractive and dull. Well, compared to these ladies she was unremarkable in every way, so she supposed "dull" worked well enough to describe her. She tugged a strand of dark hair around, staring at it morosely. In comparison to the bright cascade of blonds all around (including him, she thought in dark amusement) it seemed a disgusting color. There was even some gray in it.

No matter that most of that hair was bleached, either. He didn't seem to care; all that it took was an impossibly slender figure with a huge fake chest and slathering of makeup. Her shoulders slumped.

How could she compete with that? The answer was obvious: she couldn't. She knew she should have tried to get along without him a long time ago but they were friends. He could talk to her like he couldn't the "pretty ones", for one.

Except when the "pretty ones" were around of course.

"Hey, why aren't you having fun?" An annoying, bright-eyed waif bubbled up towards her. "You should get out here! We're playing party games!" She grabbed Elly's arm and tugged her towards the center of the seething mass.

 "I don't want to -" Her reply was cut off by the slight pause in the festivities as all the ladies stared at her. Then, as she knew they would, they dismissed her and turned back to trying to flirt the most attention out of the birthday boy. "Yeah, that's right," she hissed between clenched teeth. "I'm not a threat."

Her would-be benefactor had moved off, considering her act of charity complete. Elly melted into the background, slowly fading back until she could make a dash for the bedroom. She walked quickly down the hallway towards the safety of her personal haven, not wanting to ruin his day with a display of ugliness. She wasn't quite sure, however, if she meant her appearance or inner thoughts. She curled quietly up in her bed with all the lights turned off, hoping to sleep until they were all gone. The haunting thought that he might bring a girl into his room and she'd hear them kept her awake far into the night, however.

When things grew quiet several hours later she rubbed her sandy eyes and got up. She had a fierce thirst and hadn't thought to bring a glass of water in with her. Stumbling down the hall - she wasn't graceful when she first got up at all, more like a beached whale -- Elly tried to be as quiet as possible. As she was filling her glass up at the sink she realized she'd alerted him to her presence despite her precautions.  A tall, thin shadow loomed in the doorway. She winced.


"Oh, sorry," she murmured apologetically, casting her eyes down. "I just needed some water. I'm out." She stepped to the door but he stood in her way until she looked up.

Sanji was wearing a blue satin robe belted loosely about his waist: her present to him this year. She noticed that if he had a choice in the matter, he always picked blue and had chosen this accordingly. He'd certainly needed a new one, since his other had been worn thin with a few holes in it. One bare, stubbled leg was stuck out holding the door open.

"I thought you were sick or something." The fine gold hair on the side of his face shifted as he bent towards her, frowning. "God, you look awful."

She grimaced. "Thanks. Listen, I'm sorry... you were so happy and everything, I just left my gift with the others and went to lie down. Happy birthday," she added weakly.

"Wait a minute." He clearly wasn't listening and it was making her nervous. He placed his hand under her chin and turned her face carefully towards the light. "Were you crying?"

"Wh - what? No!"

He eyed her suspiciously, his hand moving to cup her cheek and trace the still-wet trails with a careful thumb. "Really?"

"They just teared up, is all. From the pain. I have a headache." She relaxed a little. That would explain the red eyes, too.

His visible blue eye narrowed. "Defensive," he muttered.

"Huh? I am not!"

"Denise told me she saw you crying. You know -  she told me after, when she was leaving, but..."

"Oh, one of your little playmates?" She bit her lip; she hadn't meant to say that.

Sanji blinked, shocked. "Just a friend."

"A friend? Not like my friendship." She tried to push past him but unlike all those witty comedy scenarios played out in her head, it backfired. She didn't get to walk out on cue because he reached out and stopped her by wrapping an arm about her shoulders.

"Wait," he half-begged. "What the hell is going on here? Can't you just tell me what's wrong?"

"Ergh." Her eyelid twitched. Maybe it was because she'd held it in for several years. Or it could have been the several hours spent alone in the dark thinking horrible thoughts that made her cry. Whatever the reason she exploded. "You want to know what's wrong? I'm fat, I'm ugly, I'm disgusting and I'm in love with you!" She tore away from him in one massive wrench and ran down the hall.

"What?" He stood there dumbfounded. The slamming of her door brought him back to his senses quickly, however. He jumped a little and then swore. "Shit! I - uh, wait!"

He darted over and knocked. "Go away, I embarrassed myself enough already," came her muffled reply.

"Open up. C'mon," he wheedled in his best suave voice. She bit her lip and sat on her hands on the bed.

"Just forget I said anything."

"Damn it," he muttered. "All right, then stand back!" She flinched back wildly as pieces of her door broke inward with a great splintering noise.

"Sanji!" She gasped. "That's going to cost a fortune to replace!"

He shook his foot, wood chunks falling to the carpet as he did, and stepped through the open hole he'd made. "I'll pay it." He reached out and amazingly placed his arms around her waist, causing her to blush wildly.

"What's going on?!" The other girl had bolted from her room to stand, gaping, in the middle of the hallway. She leaned back a bit when she saw the wreckage of what had once been the solid door leading to Elly's room. Predictably, she did a double take when she saw the handsome young man embracing Elly, more shocked than when she had seen the destruction. "Um. Is everything okay?"

"Yeah." Sanji turned around and grinned wickedly at her. "It is now." She raised both eyebrows but retreated back to her own room, leaving them alone again.

"What - what're you -"

"I think," he said softly, "seeing as you have no door to your room, you'd better spend the night in mine."

"Your wh - your what?"

"My bed, my room ... both or one or the other. Your choice," he added slyly. "It's not yet midnight, though, so it's still my birthday. And despite what you might think, I've never gotten the one gift I've always wanted."

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