|Smichiko (smichiko) wrote in smichifics,|
@ 2008-05-16 16:41:00
|Entry tags:||arnold, arnold/helga, fandom: hey arnold, helga pataki, het, rating: pg|
Character(s): Arnold, Helga Pataki
Summary: Arnold and Helga meet by accident.
Prompt(s): 'nothing but confusion' & 'fireworks'
Word Count: 1124
A/N: Originally posted July 2006.
"Some Fourth of July," Helga muttered, blowing a bubble with her gum as she propped her feet up on the crate in front of her. It popped, the gum sticking to the tip of her nose. She sighed, but didn't bother removing it. She only punished the remaining wad of gum by chewing it harder, smacking so loudly that she was certain they could probably hear her downstairs...not that they cared.
Olga had come home again. Helga scoffed and removed her feet from their prop, willing herself not to think about it.
Of course, it wasn't just that. It had made her so irritable that she'd yelled at Phoebe for practically no reason, prompting her friend to avoid her for the rest of the day. Helga sighed again. she hated apologizing, but she hated not having Phoebe around even more. Damn pride.
The sun was setting. Helga looked around. Her neighbors were crowding onto their rooftops, anxiously awaiting the fireworks display--and some of them preparing for their own. She looked at the family to her left, deciding that she couldn't sit up here on her own. She just couldn't take it.
Helga climbed down her fire escape--she really didn't want to head inside just now. She strolled leisurely down the street instead, kicking at imaginary rocks in her path, not having any idea of where she was wandering to. She stared at the ground, counting each and every crack. That is, until she bumped into something rather solid.
"Hey, watch where you're goin'," she said in a half-hearted tone, as she attempted to dust herself off.
"Sorry, I didn't see--Helga?"
"Arnold!" Helga exclaimed, too surprised to remember to put the usual edge in her tone. That's when she noticed what was in his hands. A white basket, filled with pink grass--the kind her mother used during Easter. She cocked an eyebrow. "Whatcha doin', Football Head?"
Arnold blanched. Did she still have to call him that, even after all these years? They were nearly juniors, for Pete's sake.
"I'm on an Easter Egg Hunt," he admitted, feeling himself blush a little.
Helga blinked, then burst out laughing. "A...a what? An Easter Egg Hunt? Oh, Football Head, that's priceless! Do you do this sort of thing all the time?" she asked, still struggling to breathe through her snorts of laughter.
"Well...Grandma tends to get holidays confused. We just go along with it." As he said this, a loud, blue firework cracked above their heads.
"Isn't it a little...late to be looking for Easter eggs?"
"Grandma won't let me back in the house unless I've found at least six." Helga almost laughed again, but he looked so pathetic that she couldn't quite manage it.
"Tell ya what, Football Head. I've got some dye left over from aaah--" she cut off, remembering what was waiting for her back home. "--actually, I was just looking for a place to watch the fireworks."
Arnold looked somewhere beyond her, nodding his head in that direction. Helga turned around, spying a bench outside of a closed candy store. "Good a place as any," he said, sinking down onto it as his basket lay forgotten on the sidewalk. He leaned back and looked at the sky, closing his eyes in exhaustion. Helga hesistated for a moment before joining him. She looked up at the sky, too, watching for fireworks. After a few moments, she noticed that she had been holding her breath. Helga inwardly berated herself for being so weak.
"Nice night," Helga said in a throaty voice that she didn't recognize, thinking that it was at least better than that oppressive silence.
Arnold opened one eye, regarding her curiously. "I guess so," he responded simply, bringing his hand down onto the bench as he straightened himself. He hadn't noticed that Helga's hand was there already, however, and they both jerked their hands away abruptly.
"Forget about it."
Arnold sighed and leaned forward, resting his elbow on his knee as he leaned towards her. "Why d'you always have to be like that?"
Helga's eyes widened for a split second. She recovered quickly, putting a scowl on her face. "I'm not defensive."
"You are too."
Arnold didn't respond, knowing that they weren't getting anywhere with this kind of juvenile discourse. "I know you're not really mean."
"Well, what if I am? Would your perfect vision of the world be crushed forever?" she asked annoyedly, crossing her arms over her chest.
"What if I said 'yeah'?" he countered.
"Look, just because you want to believe that something's true doesn't make it true."
Arnold paused, narrowing his eyes. He looked like he was about to respond, but he shut his mouth and mulled it over for a moment. "I suppose you're right," he said after a while.
Helga nodded to herself, looking satisfied. The truth was...well, she didn't really know what the truth was. Most of the time she wanted him to think of her as mean; it was so much easier that way. She never had to explain herself to anybody, and especially not Arnold. So even if it hurt a little, she figured that she was sparing herself a lot of extra pain. And Arnold, too. It was better to keep him in the dark, she decided.
Helga closed her eyes, very satisfied with herself. She didn't expect what came next--and it threw her entire manner of thinking out the window. Arnold leaned toward her--the bench creaked as he rested his weight on his hands between them--and kissed her. Not deep and full, and not on the lips, the way it always happened when she dreamed about it. It was short, soft, simple...and on her cheek. Helga opened her eyes, looking at him incredulously.
She was about to tell him off, but Arnold cut her off. "I've got to go, Helga. See you later."
"You...you...wait just a--!"
"Thanks, Helga," he said calmly, waving as he headed back towards his home. Helga sputtered, trying to think of the response. By the time she'd thought of one, he had already disappeared around the corner.
"Stupid Football Head," she muttered to herself, looking down at her feet. The sound of banging fireworks in the distance drowned out her thoughts. Which was good, because she didn't feel too much like thinking.
A loud, annoying noise disrupted Helga from her state of non-thinking. Helga sighed and balled up her first, jerking it backward, straight into Brainy's nose. The kid never learned, did he?