for dori, because shipping soulmates. and because she cries with me over sitcoms that ended six years ago. ilu, babe. (there isn't as much eric/hyde focus in this as i thought there would be, but i am pretty sure at some point i will end up writing actual eric/hyde/jackie, so, there's that too.)
you got love, you ain't lonely » that '70s show. hyde/jackie. pg-13. 2,319 words.
It starts off as something to pass the time. Set mostly between season four and season five. warnings: mild drug use (lol, duh). I don't own these characters.
It goes something like this:
Summer’s great, not being in school is great, but it’s also a lot of afternoons with nothing to do except sit around bored, and it’s the same television shows playing over and over, and Kelso’s in California and Forman just moans about Donna all the time, but—Jackie’s there, and her legs slide around his waist when she kisses him on the couch and her mouth is warm and kind of sweet and his hands fit over her breasts in a way that makes her arch her back and. Well.
It sure as hell beats anything else there is to do.
“Look, this isn’t going to be a thing, okay?” Jackie’s got her arms crossed and her foot tapping on the floor in a pose that’s about as melodramatic as he thought only cartoons could be, and Hyde frowns, because hey, she doesn’t have to tell him twice.
“Well, yeah, duh.”
She huffs. “Good. Because I don’t have things for scruffy guys who live in basements, okay?”
“And I don’t have things for girls who can’t shut up.” He smirks, and when he puts his hands on her waist she curls her fingers in his shirt and kisses him, parts her lips just so and sucks lightly at his tongue, and well, that’s definitely point taken.
He edges them back to the couch, leans her down and slides on top of her with a discomforting sense of ease, like, how many times have they done this, again? Not that often. Only when Forman and Fez aren’t around and there’s nothing else to do. (Which is, okay, maybe a lot.)
And he’s the one who keeps reminding her that this works better with no talking, except—“For godsakes, Jackie, if you’re going to keep throwing yourself at me you could stop it with the bright red lipstick,” he complains, scrunching up his face as he pulls his head back to wipe the stickiness off his mouth with the back of his hand.
“Steven!” Jackie squeaks—actually squeaks—indignantly, eyebrows knotting as she starts to push herself up. “This is not red lipstick, this is dusty rose, only hookers wear bright red lipstick— and I am so not throwing myself at you!” That bit gets him a smack on the arm. She narrows her eyes, not-bright-red lips pursed.
“Uh... Right. Well, you’re the one that keeps coming over here, so make up your mind, woman, I could care less.” Maybe that’s a bit of a lie, because they were just getting into it and he really rather wouldn’t stop, but he’s not about to argue with her about lipstick.
For a split second, it feels like he’s having an out-of-body moment, because how the hell did he ever end up here, where discussing the finer specifics of cosmetics colouring with Jackie Burkhart is actually an option, but she’s staring at him all big doe eyes and dusty lashes, dark curls falling over her shoulders, and he’s got a hand slid just under her silky blouse, fingers splayed on smooth stomach, and—and it’s like, right, well, how was he supposed to resist this?
Jackie sighs. “Ugh, just go back to kissing me,” she orders, so he does.
So, there was this one time when he was bored and he tried to teach a cheerleader to be zen and turned her into a bit of a burn-out.
And he definitely never imagined that ‘the four of them having a circle in the basement’ would ever become Eric, Fez, himself, and Jackie, but somehow that’s the order of the summer. Fez complains about not getting any, and Eric complains about Donna leaving, and Jackie complains about the hardships that come along with being so beautiful, and okay, on second thought maybe it’s not that different from when Kelso was here after all.
Jackie gets giggly when she’s baked, though, giggles at the pattern on the carpet and giggles when she makes up excuses for having to leave and can’t stop glancing over at him with her eyes all big and meaningful. Honestly, this girl is the farthest thing from subtle, and it’s a good thing Eric and Fez can be so goddamn oblivious when they’re whining about their own problems, and, you know, totally out of it.
So Hyde makes excuses a minute or two later, ducks out the back door and finds Jackie sitting on the stairs tugging her lip between her teeth, and it’s kind of fun knowing that the guys inside could find them any second now if they weren’t such idiots. They could walk right out and see him with his tongue down Jackie’s throat and Jackie’s squirming into his lap and tugging her fingers in his hair, but they don’t. Instead, it’s just this haze of warm mouths that still taste like smoke and inches of bare skin slowly exposed and it's—it’s fun anyway, and it’s not like it’s about Jackie, but sometimes he thinks he could get used to it, sometimes he thinks it's pretty perfect, smoking the day away and hiding in corners with a pretty girl in his lap, and her soft hair and the little sounds she makes.
Sometimes Eric and Fez aren’t around at all, and it’s just the two of them on the floor in the basement—“Can you even call this a circle?” he wonders, loudly, and it sounds funny enough he laughs. He gestures back and forth in the space between them, back and forth, and it’s—well, it’s not a circle, just a line, back and forth, but—he tries again, makes his hand trace a little circle in the air instead, shrugs.
Jackie giggles, edging closer till their knees brush, and she sucks in a deep hit. “I’m glad it’s not a circle.” She does that thing, that head-toss thing that makes her hair fall in front of her shoulders, and he should probably warn her not to do that if she doesn’t want to light her hair on fire, but she passes the roll back and he forgets all about it.
“Do you want to know why, Steven?” she prods—no, literally, prods, finger poking at his leg insistently.
He forgets what they’re talking about, to be honest—something to do with shapes, something that’s making Jackie grin, so he grins too.
“I wouldn’t do this if we were in a circle,” she whispers, and then her lips are brushing his, just a soft, smoky press of her mouth, and any conversation has flown over his head, but this, okay, this he can do, setting the joint down and pulling Jackie into his lap. Forman could be home any minute, technically, but Jackie smells like smoke and strawberry shampoo and he’s still not really thinking straight, and again it’s just like, well, he could kind of get used to this.
And yeah, okay, eventually the whole ‘keeping it a secret’ thing blows up in their faces, but that was to be expected. Forman’s just overreacting like he always does, and it shouldn’t even affect him anyway. (Breaking up the band? Really? They’re a pretty far cry from a band. They’re a group of basically-delinquents who sit around a basement and bicker amongst themselves whenever they’re not smoking up. And honestly, Kelso doesn’t even have to find out.)
Except then a few hours later, a few hours after all Jackie’s bluster stalking out of the basement and tugging him along, they’re back in his room making out on the bed, and Jackie’s already let him get her shirt all the way off when she stops and sits up, biting her lip and tilting her head like she wants to ask him something—and that’s new, Jackie’s not speaking up about whatever’s on her mind.
Inevitably, it only lasts a few seconds.
“What are we doing, Steven?” She crosses her arms and raises her eyebrows demandingly, but it’s a little less cartoonish now, a little more defensive. It’s not the first time she’s asked. She’s always the one asking, always the one who wants to name whatever they’re doing— they’re fooling around, or they’re messing with Kelso, or they’re a fling. She’s always the one with the questions, but he’s not exactly the guy with answers, so where that puts them he doesn’t really know.
“Oh, come on. Don’t tell me this is ‘cause of Eric and Donna. We’re supposed to be messing with their heads, not the other way around.”
It feels a little dick-ish, a little Kelso, to be avoiding the question so purposefully, but they’ve gotten this far without answers and Hyde’s okay with that. Maybe Jackie doesn’t sicken him as much as she should, and maybe he doesn’t really want to end this, but that doesn’t mean he wants to start defining anything either.
Besides, Jackie’s sitting on top of him in lacy lingerie, and it’s pretty hard to focus on anything else.
“Right,” she nods. “I mean, you don’t want to stop just ‘cause it’s pissing them off. Right?”
“Jackie. I am always up for pissing people off.”
She grins, and she settles back down, and he almost says it just to make clear, we don’t have to stop, even though Donna and Kelso are back and everything else is returning to normal, even though nothing about this is supposed to be normal.
He bites his tongue.
It’s dumb, really, that he actually has to explain to Eric that Jackie is hot.
It’s even more dumb that he’s actually thinking of telling Kelso about what’s been going on with him and Jackie, that he admitted to Eric that he can see it lasting a little while, because he might not be the kind of person who always has a plan, but—this definitely wasn’t the plan.
They crack open a case of Red’s beers in the basement when it’s just the two of them, and Eric sighs loudly out of the blue.
“You know, this means I’m the last man standing.” He’s got a knowing tilt to his head and a smirk tugging the corner of his mouth, the kind that means he’s probably had this punch line planned out for days.
So, fine, Hyde bites. “What are you talking about?” He snorts. “And by the way, think you’re being a bit generous with man there.”
Eric ignores that, obviously, and raises his eyebrows. “Well.” Always so long-suffering, Forman. “I means I’m the last man in our little gang who hasn’t been wrapped around Jackie Burkhart’s little finger.” He twirls his finger to demonstrate, and pokes Hyde in the shoulder on the last words. He’s grinning, all pleased with himself, so Hyde elbows him as hard as he can and rolls his eyes.
“I’m not wrapped around anyone’s fingers, okay? Definitely not Jackie’s.”
“Uh huh. Right.” Eric pats his shoulder, lets his hand stay and grips tight, all mocking sympathy. “Hey, whatever you have to tell yourself.”
And Hyde’s in the middle of taking a gulp of beer or he’d just tell him to get bent, but before he can get to it Eric’s already piping up again, seemingly taking a hint from his expression.
“Oh, come on, I’m just messing with you.” The grin’s slipped off by now, and he almost looks thoughtful, sucking in his cheeks. “I mean... look, if she’s what you want, man—” He sounds dead serious, that’s the thing. Two seconds ago he was all game-show host flamboyance determined to make fun of Hyde, but now he’s saying if she’s what you want like he could honestly mean it, like maybe it’s true, even though they’re talking about Jackie here, and it’s just ridiculous, but this—it’s out of nowhere, but he thinks of the Eric who said “hey, if you need a place to live,” the Eric who finally manned up for once in his goddamn life to yell at his dad when he thought Hyde was getting kicked out.
So, naturally, Hyde makes sure to roll his eyes again. Swallows. Eric’s hand is still on his shoulder, and it’s all bone, his thumb digging sharp against collarbone, but Hyde doesn’t shrug it off
“Yeah, yeah, Forman.” He elbows him again too, but it’s half-hearted. “Don’t get girly about it.”
Eric just grins. “Nah.”
It’s not too long after – after the talk with Eric, after Kelso found out, after things calmed down – when they’re sitting in a circle, all six of them crowded in close on the basement rug.
Fez is munching on a candy bar, and Eric and Donna are acting like they’re in the honeymoon stage, and Kelso is telling a story about fighting sharks in California, and Jackie’s sitting in his lap and playing with his hands. He’s got a pleasant high going and it’s hard to be worried about much, hard to think about questions and answers, so he lets her twist and tangle their fingers together.
Eric catches his eye, though he’s not really sure which of them looked up first, and then Eric’s staring at their hands, and his eyebrows are doing that funny uneven thing like he’s still having trouble believing it, but he grins—it’s probably just the smoke anyway.
And then Donna says something that makes Jackie laugh, and it’s just like—Hyde knows this, he knows getting relaxed and Jackie laughing at anything and his thumb brushing the skin under the hem of her shirt and her hair rubbing his neck, and he knows what it would be like to kiss her right now and how she would make that small noise and how she would open her mouth and what the smoke between them would taste like.
And he really can’t pinpoint the when of knowing all these things, but it’s crazy, realizing that at some point, yeah—he's gotten used to this.
He squeezes Jackie's fingers, just a little.