- Black Fingernails Red Wine // Eskimo Joe

Natalie Cole;

“I think we need to take our little Owen out.” Danny announced as he threw himself down onto my bed.

“What is he? a dog we need to take on a walk?” I scoffed from where I sat curled up in the armchair stuffed in the corner, not even bothering to remove my earbuds from my ears.

“You know I didn’t mean it like that Nat!” He grinned that cheeky grin at me. It usually meant I would go along with whatever stupid and ill thought-out plan he currently had. Today I was determined to resist it.

“Oh yeah,” I cocked an eyebrow challengingly, “How did you mean it then?” 

“We should take him out to a club or something,” He shrugged like he didn’t have the whole evening planned in his head already. I would bet money that he did.

“Why?” I asked absentmindedly tapping the beat of the music I was still listening to out on my jean clad knee.

“Because that boy needs to learn to live a little.” He sat up now.

“I really don’t think Owen is as sheltered as you think he is.” I sighed. I mean yes okay he was uncomfortable and awkward around us something but the more time I spent with him the more I was starting to think it was actually because he was still not completely comfortable with us rather than the things we discussed.

“Please, have you seen the boy. Innocent as the day he was born” Danny scoffed, “What makes you so sure anyway.”

“For one he is a fairly attractive university student,” I pulled my earphones out, resigning myself to this conversation, “For another remember that time we took him clubbing and he ended up with like 6 different girls numbers.”

“And he got absolutely sh.itfaced.” Danny pointed out like that proved his point. I’d actually say it proved my point.

“Which proves he’s not that innocent stupid.” I got up with a sigh, crossing the room to drop next to Danny on the bed

“Proves he doesn’t do it often.” Danny contradicted me

“Low alcohol tolerance proves nothing.” I sighed, slapping him gently in the shoulder for good measure, “Case and point that one girlfriend you had, what was her name?” I paused like I didn’t know. I actually knew very well.

“Karen.” Danny supplied 

“Right, right, Karen.” I nodded solemnly, “The girl that got shi.tfaced off a single beer and was sh.itfaced every single time I ever met her.”

“Fine, maybe he’s not so innocent.” Danny shrugged again grinning one more. Damn him to hell, I was going to cave soon, I knew it, “We should go out with him tonight so you can prove it to me.”

“I don’t know if that’s such a good idea.” I sighed, resting my head against his shoulder.

“Why not?” Danny wrapped an arm around my shoulder. But with his other hand he poked me incessantly in the leg, demanding an answer, “Scared or something?”

“No,” I sighed, sticking out my lower lip in a childish pout, “I’m just not sure if I can,” I paused not wanting to say it. Which was stupid because Danny knew everything, “I’m not sure I can afford it.” I said as quietly as I could.

“I’ll pay then.” He shrugged like it was no big deal. But I hated being a charity case. Absolutely hated it.

“Danny you paid last time. I can’t keep mooching off you.” I sighed, though actually I could do with a night out. It’d been way to long.

“My idea, my treat.” He shrugged like it was nothing. For him it was, bas.tard could probably afford his own treat, sensing my continued reluctance he added, “Would it help if I paid for you and Owen.”

“Maybe.” I pulled back to smile at him sheepishly, “You’re the best.” I told him solemnly before wrapping my arms around his neck.

“Hey I didn’t say I would do it.” He pretended to push my away.

“But you will.” I said confidently.

“I will.” He agreed, wrapping his arms around my waist 


“The fu.ck are you wearing?” Danny asked, all raised eyebrows as I descended the stairs into the foyer to meet him and Owen, the other girls conspicuously absent. For about a second I wondered where they were but then I decided I really did not care.

“Clothes.” I shrugged, bumping my hip against his gently, “You’re dragging my clubbing I will go fine,” I told him sternly, “But I don’t feel like wearing some horrible short and tight dress tonight, so I won’t.”

“I think you look hot Nat.” Owen spoke up, glancing over at him I realized wow the kid actually scrubbed up nicely.

“Thank you Owen.” I stepped towards him, standing up on my tip toes so I could press a kiss on his cheek, “You look rather handsome yourself.” Not even a blush from the guy. It was starting to be a good night.

“Let’s just go.” Danny muttered, brushing past us for the door.

Me and Owen trailed behind him, chatting and Owen even opened my door for me.

“See,” I whispered to Danny, leaning over the console as Owen walked round to get into the back, “at least someone in this house knows how to treat a woman.”


“Heya Nat.” Owen grinned up at me with a dopey, most defiantly drunk smile, “Hows it going.”

“It’s going great sweetie.” I smiled at him, and the host of overly dressed, trashy sl.uts that were hovering around him. Easy prey or something I guess. “Are you ready to go home.”

“Nope.” He hiccupped with another big grin before frowning suddenly, “Okay maybe.”

“Alright, let’s get you out of here.” I glared at the plastics surrounding him till they got the hint and pissed off, some looking more annoyed that others. “We’re going to have to get a taxi though.” I told him apologetically, glad at least it wasn’t a weekend so we wouldn’t have such a long wait.

“Why? What about Danny?” He asked as I helped him to his feet, “Where’s Danny.”

“Danny’s going home with some lucky lady.” I wrinkled my nose because, well I’d though Danny’s taste was better than her.

“Oh Okay.” He nodded, leaning some of his weight on me as we made our way out to the street. 

He was quiet until we were sitting in the back of the taxi on the way home in fact (Danny being kind enough to remember to give me money for the fare home. Usually he forgot which is why I hated going out with him) “You’re really nice Nat.” He told me, all wide and sincere eyes, “And really pretty and cool.”

“Thank you sweetie” I smiled back. I never really knew what Owen thought of me and even though these were drunken ramblings they must of contained some grain of truth. “You’re not to bad yourself.”

“Really?” He lit up with one of the biggest and most sincere grins I’d ever seen. Like someone told him he’s won the lottery rather than just he wasn’t that bad.

“Well from what I can tell.” I nudged his shoulder with mine playfully, “I mean you’re a bit closed off from the rest of us.”

“Yeah.” And just like that his grin dropped from his face like his puppy had died or something. And I felt an irrational sense of guilt. Mostly because speaking of puppies he looked like a kicked one.

“Hey, you alright?” I asked, scooting over to the middle seat so I was next to him, despite the drivers evil eyes.

“I’m fine.” He shrugged all petulantly like a small child.

“Hey now,” I pulled his head down gently to rest on my shoulder, “Is this about why you’re reserved and don’t spend all that much time with us?”

“You guys are all like so close and know stuff that goes over my head and stuff and yea.” He shrugged actually answering to my surprise. Alcohol worked wonders on this boy.

“Aww baby that’s just because you don’t seem to want to spend time with us,” I stroked my hand through his curls wanting to see if they were as soft as the looked. Spoiler; they were.

“I dunno how.”

“Well less blushing and stammering would help.” I teased playfully, conscious that he’d probably not remember very much of this conversation in the morning, “You know Danny thinks you’re an innocent angel or something. That’s why we came out tonight.”

“Not innocent.” He sighed, burrowing further into my neck and snuggling into my side. I think it was the most contact any of us had with Owen ever. I knew he’d actually be a cuddle bunny on the inside. Right again Nat.

“No I can see that.” I laughed, “Just be your charming, flirty not so innocent self. Easy.” I told him still running my fingers through his hair which was actually seeming to make him sleepy. Or it might been the booze.

“Thanks Nat.” He muttered, “You’re more awesome than awesome.” He was fighting to keep his eyelids open now.

“No problem babe.” I dropped a kiss to his forehead and tried not to laugh when I noticed he was asleep. (And super cute in a non edward cullenish sort of way)

I’d have to wake him when we got home though, which was a shame. But at least I had thinking up horribly mean ways to do it to entertain myself all the way home.
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