My little Tumblr story that I concocted to feed my Shenny obsession. If you are not aware of these guys. They are my Berry sweet verison of Sheldon and Penny, but their names are Penny Blossom Delight and Shark Calypso, so Shenny still works. 😄 ♥
“I’m sorry!” Penny stammered. “I was just teasing.”
“I hate to inform you Penny, but it was not very funny. It was an invasion of my personal space.”
“You’re right. I was out of line. I’m sorry. It was a joke, but you are right it was a bad joke. I’m sorry.”
She watched as he dropped his face into his hands, refusing to look at her. Penny’s heart was beating so fast it seemed to skip a beat every now and again. She wanted to place a hand on his shoulder, but she knew that would only feed the flame she had already started. Her nerves were shot and her lips had curled into a distressed smile. It wasn’t funny but the proper use of her facial muscles seemed impossible to control at that moment in time. “I’m sorry.” She said again, much more lifeless than before. She stood from the couch and marched through the front door, back to the safety of her own apartment. She didn’t mean to slam the door behind her, but a lot like her facial muscles, she was not in control. Auto pilot sent her through her front door, unlocking the deadbolt faster than she had ever done before. She closed the door behind her and slid down it’s cool surface, landing in a rumpled mess on the floor. Way to go Penny you successfully made the night even more embarrassing than it had been before.
Her plan had worked for a short amount of time. If only it could have lasted a bit a longer. Using her working knowledge about the beautiful mind across the hall, she had managed to avoid him for several long and lonely weeks. She wasn’t even sure why she had the need to go to such drastic measures, all she knew was, she had really crossed the line, with hands down, her best friend, and the thought of looking him in the eye now terrified her. She never allowed herself to ask why it did so. No, she was far too busy spying out her front door, open just a crack, to make sure the coast was clear. Things had worked to her advantage up until an unexpected phone call from her work. The onslaught of extra diners for Valentines day, coupled with a few timely MIA waitresses meant, an unscheduled leave from her apartment.
She opened the front door and peered into the hall. Everything seemed in order, all she had to do was get the down the stairs and –
Pennys’s gaze dropped to her feet as she made her way past. Still clutching her keys, she chose not to look back and instead headed for the steps. Once she had made it onto the first step, which in her mind meant, everything was going to be okay, she finally responded back to the aforementioned hello.”Oh Shark honey this is not a good time. Work just called and they need me to come down immediately.”
She had this for sure.
“But I need you.”
and third, no, no third step, her foot was hovering just above it.
Realizing what he had said, quickly added. “I mean I need to talk to you.”
Penny’s shoulders slumped forward, she just couldn’t get herself to look back. “I really have to go to work, but I promise the moment I am back, Okay.”
True to her word, as well as his, the instant Penny arrived home, she was greeted at the top of the steps. Her stomach did a flip flop from nerves, but she forced a smile before letting them both inside her apartment. The living room was dark and for the first time in a long time it felt terribly uninviting. Walking to the hall she flipped on the light there and then joined her strange companion on the couch. The thought had crossed her mind, that it was odd he located himself on the couch, but nothing seemed to be happening normally that night.
She had barely taken her seat when he started to speak.
“Is there something troubling you?” He inquired. “Are you under distress again. Did the ice cream not work?”
“The ice cream worked fine. I have just been busy.”
“Excuse me for saying so Penny, but it feels as if you are avoiding us. More specifically me. I can not say to a certainty that this is true, but it has been 17 days and you have not come to the apartment once. The longest duration of time between your usual visits is 10 hours.”
She didn’t have an answer for that. He was right, as usual.
“I guess I was a little embarrassed about how I acted that night. I stepped over the line with you and I felt so awful about it that I had nothing else to say but I’m sorry, and since I’m sorry could only get me so far I-
“I don’t like it when you go away.”
The lanky physicist turned in his seat to face her. “I said I don’t like it when you go away. The entire time you were gone, all I could think about was when you were coming back. Several times I stood at your door, but for some reason knocking proved to be too difficult. For the first time in my life I considered the fact it might bother you and I went back inside… I have never worried about such trivial things in my life. I found myself worrying a lot after that. Thinking about the way I reacted, wondering if I had been too harsh. These things are not me Penny, and yet now they are. It was that worry that brought me here tonight. Penny, the last couple weeks have been incredibly empty. Even worse than my quarantine in the Sugar Valley general.”
“I- I don’t know what to say.”
“You don’t have to say anything, just being here with you again has given me a lift in spirits. You have always had that effect, and in it’s absence, I have come to realize that I do in fact need it.”
Now it was Penny’s turn to feel the wide eyed surprise. Her reply escaped in only a whisper. “You need me?”
“I believe I do. I’m not one for outward affection, berry knows how I feel about that, but with you it was slightly more tolerable.”
“That’s the sweetest thing I have ever heard. I think.”
“Penny I know this may seem a bit odd coming from me, but permit me to ask, seeing it is February 14th and I know that you are heavy into the social conventions of these manufactured holidays…do you have a Valentine yet?
Penny’s heart had taken off, full steam ahead. She was sure he would be able to see it slamming in and out of her chest. “I missed you too.” Was all she was able to formulate.
“So does that mean you do not have a valentine yet?”
“A small smile lifted the corners of her mouth. “No, I sure don’t.”
“Than I wish to fill the position.”
“So what are my duties? I have little no experience with this sort of thing.”
“There are no duties. You just get to hang out and maybe have a nice dinner or go for a nice walk.”
“From all the movies I have ever seen there is always some sort of touching…”
“There doesn’t have to be, those movies are made to make girls melt like a popsicle on a hot July afternoon.”
“I see. If it would be alright with you.” He scooted forward. “I would like to try something. Something that is very new to me, but the last couple days I have thought of nothing else. May I touch you?”
Penny felt her knees buckle and even though she was seated, she felt as if she was going slide right off the couch. Once she was sure she was in a stable place, she nodded and watched as carefully he brought his hands to her face. It was a small gesture, nothing behind it but curiosity and that was certainly not new, but somehow it knocked her right off her feet. His surprisingly soft fingers graced her cheeks and she allowed her eyes to float closed. She had never experienced something so sweet or sensual. The usual desire that exuded from the guys in her normal company had nothing on this. Even her reaction was completely different. If it had been one of her exes doing the touching she would have jumped him the moment their skin touched, but this, this she allowed to happen, to take it all in. For the first time in her life she felt truly appreciated.
The awkwardness was beginning to wear on Penny. It was her turn to feel the cold shoulder of omission, it was easy now see why it had been so difficult on her dearest friend. She certainly hadn’t expected it. After the evening they had spent together, she had assumed things between them would slowly settle back into their normal rhythm, but she was far from correct with her hypothesis. Hypothesis… Penny laughed to herself, she was sounding more and more like them everyday. It angered her a bit that the one person she wanted to share her humorous piece of knowledge with, was the one person who had been avoiding her. Not that he would have been interested in knowing, he would have cared less, but that would not stop her from telling him, if he had been there to listen that is.
The only thing to accompany Penny in her apartment stairwell that night, was the quiet hum of the elevator, resting just the other side of the wall from where her head was leaning. She had tried explaining to herself a few times, why she was sitting there, three floors below her own, but no explanation ever lent itself.
Truth was she had to see him. She needed to see him, talk to him, find out was happening in that big genius brain of his. After knocking on his door had led her no where, there was no other choice but to stalk him at the only place he would be unable to avoid her. He had been out late doing who knows what, and the apartment was empty again. Uncharacteristic? Most definitely, but in the long run would prove beneficial. Penny knew he had gone out alone, the boys were also out, but on a separate venture, so that meant when he finally did arrive home, he would be alone. Now she just had to wait. Her heart was beating so hard and fast, it felt as if it were slamming against the inside of her rib cage. Every time she imagined him there standing at the door, it began drumming faster and faster. At one point she placed a nervous hand over her chest, in fear it would leap out if she didn’t take immediate action.
Just a little while longer, she promised herself.
Just as expected, at quarter past eleven, a familiar lanky frame walked through the glass doors to find her there. Unfortunately the quiet lull that had been keeping her company, had inevitably caused her to fall asleep. Her head was resting peacefully against the cold wall, still succumbed to her dreamless nap. A quiet voice drifted across the hall, gently waking her.
Penny’s eyes fluttered open to find an inquisitive face staring down upon her. She blinked a few times, a smile begging to meet at the corner of her lips. “Hi.” She yawned. Her voice was still laden with sleep, and she could hear it the moment the word had left her.
“You were asleep.”
“Yeah, I know.”
“Did you lock yourself out of your apartment?”
“So you just decided it would be a fun idea to take a nap in the stairway?”
“Not exactly. I was waiting for you.”
“Yes. I need to speak to you.”
Penny could see every muscle in his face stiffen, as if readying himself for the unavoidable incoming blow.
“Penny it has been a long day. I was stuck in a mindless meeting all night and I would really like to go to bed.”
“Yes I know.” She countered. “This will only take a minute. Please?”
“Very well.” He stated almost robotic-ally, motioning with his hand for her to get on with what ever she needed to say.
She exhaled deeply. “Okay.” That was it. That was all she was able to coax out. Hers eyes opened wide, pleading for a little assistance, but all she got in return was a lifted eyebrow. “Yes? You assured me this wouldn’t take long.”
“I know. You’re right. Okay, okay. Here goes…” This time it came out in one long string of syllables. “I haven’t forgotten about valentines day, and really really hope you haven’t either.” Once she had finished she brought her hand to her face, biting the edge of her finger. She waited on pins and needles for him to respond.
There was a quiet calm resting over the entire room, and to her surprise his features softened. “No I have not forgotten.”
Penny could feel herself getting lighter, the weight bearing down was beginning to lift, just like the morning fog she knew all too well. She wanted smile and throw her arms around him, but she knew him well enough to know, not to try it. So instead she settled for a small head nod. “Good.”
“It’s not a good idea. You and I.” He came back quickly, quicker than she was expecting.
Crash. Crash. Crash. Everything crashed back down upon her, causing her entire body to jolt from the shock of those five simple words.
“Oh.” She could feel the disappointment creeping in, taking hold of her heart. “May I ask why?” She asked, but she wasn’t exactly sure if she truly wanted to hear the answer.
“We are far too different. Your needs and mine are on complete opposite ends of the scale. Logically it would never work, so there would be no point in putting either of us through it.”
It was as if the wind had been knocked out of her. She stumbled for words, but she wasn’t even sure what she was fighting for. A single tear began to form at corner of her eye. “Well.” She forced a laugh. “You’re the genius.”
Normally that would have been the end of it. She had learned through enough trials not to argue, but this time was different. This time it meant something. “You know what? No. You are wrong here.”
“Penny. I am never wrong. I think we have efficiently established that.”
“Maybe so, but this time you are.”
Startled by her adamant demeanor, he stopped to watch. Brilliant eyes searching for some sort of answer to what was happening. “What are you trying to say?”
“I’m saying that logic isn’t always a factor, and certainly not when dealing with the heart.”
“Interesting. So what would you suggest?”
Penny could feel her frustration rising. “It’s not like that. Why is this so hard for you to understand? Never mind. I know the answer to that.”
“Penny. This conversation is slowly losing speed.”
“I know! Ughhhh. You think all day long about everything, but sometimes thinking isn’t required! You make me feel things. You make me realize there is more to me than just sex or booze. There is someone out there who cares about me as a person, and whether you want to admit it or not. That someone is you!”
“Of course I care about you. You are one of my most trusted compatriots. This is just another reason why it would be ill-advised to try and manipulate the parameters of our paradigm.”
He was using those big words again, only now she could follow along a tiny bit easier. Why didn’t he get that! He had taught her so much over the years. She wasn’t just the pretty girl next door anymore, she was his trusted friend and adviser. She thought to herself for a moment, leaving the stairway and her friend behind. Perhaps he was right. They already had a good thing going, maybe parameter manipulations would just mess it up. Rule number 1: You never mess with a working formula. She was about to concede her defeat, when he chose to take it one step further.
“I would be an inadequate match for you anyways. You require things that I just don’t see myself ever being able to provide.”
“You are a physical creature Penny. You enjoy touching and kissing and all those other physical aspects of a relationship and I… well I don’t think I really need to explain to you how I feel about that sort of behavior.”
“No… I totally get it.”
“I don’t wish to lose you as my friend Penny. I hope that is clear. I just can’t offer you any more than that, and to my dismay, I find that this upsets me to certain extent that I cannot seem to understand.”
It took her a moment to properly chew on his muddled mess of an explanation, but it finally sunk in. “It bothers you that you can’t provide those things for me?”
“To a lesser degree… yes.”
“You know I would never ask you to do anything you weren’t comfortable with.”
“So you have actually given thought to… us?”
“More so lately than I care to admit.”
“Is that why you have been avoiding me?”
“So then, why?”
“I was following your lead. You had chosen the same mode of action, so why couldn’t I?”
“But you had just gotten done explaining to me how much you had missed me. Why would you turn around and ignore me?”
“To see if I could.”
“I was conducting a test, to see if I could manage with out you there. I survived, but it was incredibly less interesting. Dull would be the correct word for it. That is when I realized that I do not wish to continue through this life with out you, but to keep you on full time, as it were, well I can’t offer you the adequate wages you would require.”
“Honey, I’m not asking for anything from you. I don’t require a wage. I get more out of our relationship the way it is now, than I have with any of my other relationships combined. It’s just after that night-“
“I stepped over the line, and I apologize. I was curious and my curiosity may have started something that I am not capable of finishing.”
“I want to understand. I truly do, but if you feel something, there is no shame in admitting it. Did… you feel something?”
“I’m not sure.”
“I did. Which I guess is why I am standing here arguing with you about it. I don’t know how to explain it.” Penny let out an exasperated sigh. “You know. It’s late. I have pushed the issue long enough. Maybe we can discuss it another time.”
“I don’t mind. Being to able to talk to you again, is proving to be just what I need.”
“Doesn’t this all sound a little familiar?”
“No. Should it?”
“Never mind. Why don’t we go upstairs and I will make us some tea then.”
Penny let them both inside and then hurried over to the kitchen. Filling the pot with water and setting in the stove before addressing the issue at hand. “All I have right now is an earl gray. I hope that is alright.”
“It will be fine. Thank you.”
Penny nodded and then went back to her work. Grabbing a couple mugs from the cupboard, she set them out with a tea bag in each. What was actually happening eluded her, but she had to admit that yes, it was nice to be talking again, even if the subject was on the awkward side. They were always best when they were together. If only they could make it work. Her mind wondered across the stretch of her large front room. Maybe she didn’t need all that physical stuff, or maybe he could learn to live… just a little. Yeah that wasn’t going to happen.
“I’m not sure what I am doing here.”
“Well I invited you up for tea and-“
“No I mean, I am not sure the proper way to proceed.”
“Proceed with what?”
She wasn’t expecting him to cut across her living room, and she most defnitely did not expect him to join her standing next to her stove, the kettle just beginning to heat. Confusion colored her face, but she continued to study him carefully. Again she asked. “Proceed with what.”
He began to speak as if he were addressing the floor. “I want you to understand that I have not taken this decision lightly.” His gaze slowly started to rise, but lost momentum the moment he caught sight of her hands. Gingerly he reached out for her unsuspecting hand and carefully wrapped his long fingers around it. “Even now I am finding it hard to decide which side of the coin I will fall on.”
Time and time again he had the power to render her speechless. She blinked. Opened her mouth. Nothing. She tried again with little more success. “Shark-”
She could feel her whole body vibrating with anticipation, only she soon realized it wasn’t her at all. It was him. His hands were shaking like a leaf. “You’re nervous.” It was obvious but some reason she felt the need to point it out.
Terrified… the word along with its concept, slapped Penny up side her head. “No.” She squeaked, pulling her hand away.” No, this is just, no. No.”
Sharks eyes opened so wide that she feared she would fall in. “But I thought that this is what you wanted.”
“It is, well I think it is. No!” She shook her head, desperately hoping so shake loose some sense. “I want this, but not like this. It’s okay to be nervous or even a little scared, but terrified? Shark this isn’t fair to you. This is doing exactly what I promised I wouldn’t. This is pushing you too fast, and I refuse.”
“Well you have officially lost me. I don’t know where to go from here.”
“Let’s just forget any of this ever happened.”
“You know it’s impossible for me to forget.”
“I know… Okay let’s pretend this never happened. We do that all the time. Right?”
“Please. This is all my fault. I started this whole mess. You have your life and I have mine, let’s take it back to how it was before. What did you call it? A factory restart.”
“If that is what you wish.”
“There is no possible way to grant all of my wishes right now, so yes, this is what I wish, and maybe one day you will come to find a place where you are ready, but it’s not now.”
The kettle on the stove started to whistle, and Penny quickly turned around to tend to it. A sharp stab of hurt, relief, and confusion, struck her at her core. She sniffled deeply, but its sound had been drowned out by the depleting high pitch wail, as she pulled the pot off the hot burner.
“You know it is a bit late for tea… I should probably get home.”
She gripped the handle of the kettle. “Yeah. Alright. Goodnight Shark.”
Shark closed the door behind him and walked the short distance across the hall to his own apartment. Baffled as well as confused and he hated every moment, but like most things with Penny, he was more concerned with unraveling the mystery than that tinge of embarrassment currently resting in his belly. She had been upset and he could tell, but why? He tried everything to make her happy, and nothing seemed to work. He was slowly convincing himself that he was not cut out for this sort of thing, but even still, when the time came for him to “pretend” he couldn’t bring himself to do it. Why? He had no idea in the slightest.
Penny had settled into her new favorite past time. Sliding down various forms of furniture or hardware and coming to land in a puddle on the cold floor. How was she going to fix this? She knew for a fact, things would not go right back to normal, she wasn’t sure if they ever would. Even if they promised it every day, she just didn’t see how it would be possible. Mentally kicking herself, she began to regret her hasty reaction. Maybe she should have let him “proceed”. Maybe he would have shaken off his nerves and knocked her socks off. Her mind started to consider what may have happened if she had held her tongue and she only felt worse.
What was she going to do…
Things did not return to normal, nor did it look like they would be heading in that direction any time soon. The awkwardness was apparent even if it was only to Penny. It was hard to get comfortable, to let herself relax. The comfort of her favorite spot on the couch, was no longer enough to help her out of place feelings. She tried everything she could to fix her internal alienation. Some decisions, she would have admitted, were a little on the stupid side. She had fallen back into the arms of several men trying to heal the loneliness in her heart. Time and time again she tried, but she soon learned, it wasn’t working anymore. She was miserable and the only way she could think to fix it, was completely out of the question. She was in a world of hurt and there was no one to turn to. Leo sure wouldn’t understand, and she couldn’t possibly discuss it with the girls. Instead she spent every night alone. Sure she might have gone out, with several different guys, but she not once had she invited them back to her place. It was a step in the right direction, but she was still suffering quietly, while the one person who could offer her some sort of semblance was still blissfully unaware… or so she thought.
She was going out again. She didn’t even care that is had been her fourth night that week, or that she already reeked of juice and she hadn’t even hit the bar yet. Penny was still feeling horrible and the only way to escape it, even if it were only temporary, was by drowning her sorrows in the bottom of what ever bottle she could find. She wasn’t drunk but she wasn’t sober either. This fact would have been apparent to anyone who was watching, almost tripping over the rug in her bathroom as she stumbled in to fix up her hair a bit, she finally came to rest standing in front of her sink.
Knock Knock Knock
Knock Knock Knock
Knock Knock Knock
Damn, just what she needed. She had almost made it out, but not quick enough. Rushing to door she opened it and offered for Shark to come in. He took one small step in, barely enough to consider it inside, and then slowly closed the door behind him.
“Penny? I have something important to ask you.”
“Shark honey, I really don’t have time right now. I was just leaving.”
“Oh. You are going out again?” He took a sniff in her direction. “It smells as if the party has already started.”
Penny bit her lip, unsure of how to answer that. “I may have had a little kick off party before hand.”
“What did you need to ask.”
“Well I see that you are busy, but I was about to take a walk to the new Thai place down the street and I was very much hoping that you would accompany me.”
“Oh… I would, but I am meeting someone at the bar.”
Shark pretended as if he had missed the whole thing, unfazed, he walked the length of her living room and settled into the chair that he had pretty much claimed was his. Adjusting in his seat before looking up to find a very confused Penny.
“So, I gotta leave now…?” She added, trying to get her point across.
“Penny, I don’t know if I really need to point this out, but things have been uncomfortable for you lately. And try as I might, I can’t seem to figure out why. Yes, I have noticed the new awkward stance you take when sitting on the couch, and I have even noticed the high volume of muscle bound guys you have been meeting up with. Now if it is possible for me to be aware of all this, don’t you think you should be?”
Penny was not wanting to hear any of it, and it only made it worse coming from the one person she was trying to medicate herself from. But lying wasn’t something she liked to do to Shark. Letting out an exasperated sigh, she walked closer to Shark and the chair. “I’m having a hard time because I miss you. And I feel guilty about all these feelings I have been having.”
“This all started that night, with the rose.”
“Something like that.”
“So what is it that you need? I thought you wanted to bring a new variable to our paradigm, but you refused the moment I suggested it.”
Penny shook her head. “There is nothing I want more, but I know it won’t happen.”
“Because… just because.”
“Have you considered the fact, that maybe what we need to do, is at the very least test your hypothesis. How will we ever know for sure.”
Penny moved without any consideration for where she was going, if she had, it probably wouldn’t have happened. She leaned in and placed her hands on either sides of his chair. Still not saying a word she dropped in closer, studying Shark’s face closely, his eyes had widened a bit, but in no way was he attempting to recoil. She closed her eyes and softly pressed her lips against his. Figuring it would be a short peck with no sort of reciprocation, it came as quite a surprise when she felt his lips soften and push back ever so gently against hers.
Trial 1 initiated.
In one swift unexpected movement, Shark had managed to slip his arms from underneath Penny’s hands. She collided with a small thud on the cushioned arms of the old chair. No sooner had she landed, did a pair of strong hands fasten themselves around her curvaceous hips, drawing the sweet waitress into his lap. Everything in the apartment faded into the shadows, leaving Penny and Shark to continue their experiment. She feared the moment she would have to let him go, what might happen, or even worse, what might not. Worry pulled at the back of her mind, but a playful nip on her bottom lip sent those worries straight out of her head. Who freakin cared what would happen, THIS was happening now, and she was going to enjoy it for as long as it lasted.
From there it was like a chain reaction. Penny knew exactly what to do, and Shark was willingly along for the ride. It wasn’t long before she had pulled him onto the floor, kissing him a bit more passionately, almost as if cuing him as to what would be occurring next. He amazingly enough caught on quickly, and allowed for her to lead him further down the path of the unknown. A small moan slipped from his lips which only fueled Penny to go further. She was far too into it stop by that point, but ubruptly Shark pulled away, sitting upright.
“Penny?” He gasped, still trying to catch his breath.
“Yeah?” She was trying to do the same.
“I would like to stop now.”
“Oh. Sure. Of course. It is getting pretty late.” She tried to pull away, but he kept his hold on her.
“No. I don’t want to leave. I just wish to stop. Things escalated quite quickly and-“
“You don’t have to explain. It’s fine. It’s fine. Really.”
Penny knew it would be out of the question to convince him to sleep in her bed, even if they were to just lay there. So she decided on a better idea. Hurriedly she made her way off to her room to grab one of the large throw pillows. Returning to the spot where Shark was still propped against the chair, she plopped the pillow on the floor and snuggled down into it. Shark watched for a moment, before Penny looked up to him, a sleepy smile on her face as she motioned with her hand for him to join her. Cautiously he got down onto his elbow before resting his head on the pillow completely. It was easy to tell, he had no idea what was happening, so Penny offered a little insight by lifting his arm and sliding underneath it. Instinctively he allowed his hand to rest on her shoulder, while the other came to rest on her arm. He pulled her in a little closer and planted one small kiss on her forehead before closing his eyes, listening intently to rhythmic sound of her breathing.
She had never intended for it to last all night, but within a few moments the pair had drifted off to sleep, sharing their first night together.