Title: sharing different heartbeats in one night
Summary: Transatlanticism Fanmix;; spoilers for the entire series, original stories by
- Radiohead – All I Need
- Martina Topley-Bird – April Grove
- Jimmy Eats World – Gotta Be Someone Else’s Blues
- Kate Nash – Nicest Thing
- Katy Rose – Pornography
- The Swell Season – The Swell Season
- Portishead – Nylon Smile
- Amanda Rogers – No Surprises
- Royskopp – In Space
- My Brightest Diamond – The Ice and The Storm
- Metric – Collect Call
- Viva Voce – The Lucky Ones
- The Softies – You and Only You
- Dntel – Dreams
- Sufjan Stevens & Rosie Thomas – The One I Love
- Bat For Lashes – Sad Eyes
- Nouvelle Vague – Love Will Tear Us Apart
- Martina Topley-Bird – Phoenix
- Melissa Featherstone – Stay
- Jesca Hoop – Love and Love Again
- Charlotte Martin – Steel
- The Murmurs – Squeeze Box Days
- CocoRosie – God Has a Voice, She Speaks Through Me
- Crystal Castles – Courtship Dating
- Sarah Jaffe – Backwards/Forwards
- Gym Class Heroes – 2nd Period: Shoot Down the Stars
- Drake ft. Lykke Li – Little Bit
- Josh Pyke – Our House Breathing
- Missy Higgins – Going North
- Jose Gonzalez – Heartbeats
download disc 2
More song information and story excerpts under the cut, with full credit to Sivi.
Book One: TINY VESSELS
Radiohead – All I Need
"It’s the only common ground between the girls she’s been kissing, but looking at Effy now, she can’t help but feel like it’s destined to go tits up, because she can’t possibly fix both of them. Not really.
Effy slips off her shoes, shrugs out of her jacket, and then motions for Emily to lie or sit down next to her, on top of the covers. Emily puts her purse on the nightstand before sitting down hesitantly, but Effy’s just lying there and she’s really, really tired—maybe just sleeping together, in the same space, will be enough for both of them.
She settles next to Effy somewhat stiffly; looks up at the ceiling, which is so white that it would drive her insane to look at it night after night—like sleeping in an insane asylum, this entire room."
Martina Topley-Bird – April Grove
“I think you’ll be sweet,” Effy says, and none of this is turning out how Emily expected it to when she first thought maybe on the walk over to Effy’s house, but she doesn’t even get time to think about that, really. Effy punctuates her guesswork with a gentle rock of her hips, which just—she groans, she can’t really help it, she’s been on edge ever since lying on top of Naomi almost an entire day ago, when it looked like she might actually get somewhere, but of course she didn’t.
She closes her eyes because it’s too much, looking at Effy and thinking about Naomi, and then gasps when she feels a finger being pressed against her lips.
A wet finger.
“I am,” Effy says in a low voice, before brushing the finger along Emily’s lips; and Emily’s tongue snakes out without permission, gets that first taste.
Jimmy Eat World – Gotta Be Somebody Else’s Blues
There are reasons, though. “You don’t love me; sometimes I wonder if you even like me,” Emily says, refusing to look at her, scuffing her feet instead.
Effy laughs. “Don’t be petulant; it’s unattractive.”
“And I don’t love you,” Emily presses on, fixing her eyes on Effy for the first time since they’ve left the club—just in time to see Effy almost flinch.
“No, you don’t,” she agrees, blandly, and flicks her cigarette onto the pavement a few feet over, a trick that Emily’s tried to perfect and still can’t do without burning her fingers.
Book Two: LIGHTNESS
Kate Nash – Nicest Thing
“I miss kissing you,” Naomi says quietly, just once, before straightening up and shaking her head. “Fuck, I’m sorry, I am—well, nevermind. I’m sorry, okay?” and before Emily can even blink, she’s grabbed two pints and is on her way back to the table.
Emily is frozen in place, watching bubbles in Effy’s drink slowly make their way to the surface, before they burst.
Katy Rose – Pornography
“You’re so wet,” Emily breathes, feeling Effy shudder against her fingers and she’s not able to resist tasting; it’s always good, that first taste, and she knows Effy loves watching her lick her fingers clean.
Effy groans and Emily laughs, pleased even though it’s so predictable.
“Em, you really—“ Effy finally says, when they’ve engaged in about as much nervous foreplay as two people who have fucked hundreds of times can, and Emily smiles, shakes her head.
“No, honestly, I want to—I’m just being stupid,” she says, and then looks around the room. “Do you have any scarves?”
Effy’s eyes widen imperceptibly, but the hitch in her breath is obvious.
Book Three: THE SOUND OF SETTLING
The Swell Season – The Swell Season
She crushes Naomi against the wall and kisses her forcefully, kisses her while crying, and then finally steps back and slaps her across the face.
“Why would you do this to me,” is all she can manage, all that she can think with Naomi’s face is swimming before her eyes, almost entirely unrecognizable except for her eyes, those fucking eyes.
She runs out of the bathroom and doesn’t stop running until she finds a bus stop; sits down there, and wonders if she’ll ever stop crying, if she’ll ever stop fucking up.
Portishead – Nylon Smile
Emily freezes completely, and then pulls her hand away, closes the knife and flings it across the room, slaps Effy across the face, too, for good measure (and some awful part of her thinks it creates balance, balance she needs). “What the fuck is wrong with you? Do you—“
“I trust you,” Effy just says, again, like it’s more of an explanation the second time around, and then pulls Emily down into a kiss with her free hand, kisses her so softly that it’s almost like the past five minutes didn’t happen, and Emily’s insides revolt completely. She pulls away, struggles to get out of the bed, and only barely manages to make it to the bathroom before throwing up.
Amanda Rogers – No Surprises
Emily waits for Naomi to cycle up, struggle with her bicycle lock and that ridiculous bag, and watches her make her way up the stairs; Naomi frowns at Emily’s unbuttoned coat, and does the buttons up one by one, ending the whole with a soft kiss to Emily’s lips.
“Better,” Naomi says, looking up at Emily like she needs to hear that it’s true; like she needs the approval.
“Yeah,” Emily says, almost meaning it.
Book Four: TITLE AND REGISTRATION
Royskopp – In Space
Spring is unnaturally tense and everyone is waiting for the end of March, when they find out for certain where they’re all going; everyone except Emily, who already knows. The time leading up to that week is spent in an odd sort of stasis, nothing moving forward or moving back; Effy is usually outside smoking, ignoring everyone but Panda and rolling her eyes at boys who flirt with her, like sometime over Christmas she finally realized she was too good for all of them, and good on her, Emily thinks, walking past her into college without actually looking at her, or at least trying hard not to.
Naomi waits for her by her locker, most days, and sometimes they even kiss, just because they can.
She’s not really disappointed that there are never flowers in her locker anymore. It’s such a stupid thing to care about, really, when Naomi holds her hand in public and stares everyone down who might want to say something to them about it.
My Brightest Diamond – The Ice and The Storm
The last picture is one of her; it’s black and white, grainy, and she’s sleeping on her stomach on Effy’s bed, legs splayed out almost indecently if not for the small bit of sheet covering her arse and a tiny bit of her thigh.
Emily doesn’t dare look to the back of it; doesn’t want to know what it says, because it might break her.
Metric – Collect Call
She looks at the picture; the light filtering across Emily’s back, thinks about the way her fingers used to trace the shaded lines until Emily would roll over and smile, and they’d start all over again.
Those lines are Naomi’s now (and it’s the wrong thing to think because she’s picturing it, the contrast in their skin tones, Naomi’s eyes eating Emily alive).
The picture falls to the floor and she squeezes her eyes shut.
Book Five: PASSENGER SEAT
Viva Voce – The Lucky Ones
Classes are generally drab (except for Introduction to Poetry, which makes me feel like I am dying half the time, and not just because Professor Graham is incredibly lush and possibly gay) and so I won’t bore you with them—but I read this, the other day, and it made me think of you:
I am moved by these fancies that cling
Like some infinitely gentle, infinitely suffering thing
PS: I believe I’m meant to infer that you purchased an actual coat, but the real question is, are you wearing it, too? Good lord, what is happening to you in the North!
The Softies – You and Only You
They go to an exhibit of architectural photography and Effy, in very brief and concise laymen’s terms, explains to Emily why it’s relevant for her; why, even though she doesn’t want to take pictures of things but of people, there’s so much she can learn here, because the real trick is the same in either case: “it’s just about recognizing the precise moment at which you can capture something at its most beautiful.”
Emily mostly just spends the afternoon watching Effy’s hands gesture animatedly even as her voice stays flat; thinks about Effy’s fingers, all the places they’ve been, all the places they know. She finally corners her in the gallery’s bathroom and kisses her slowly, just presses their lips together until Effy’s stop being cold and her own start feeling like they’re melting altogether; then, when Effy finally licks at her lips, draws her in closer, Emily relents with a sigh.
Book Six: EXPO ’86
Dntel – Dreams
As she watches Effy change, Emily thinks back to how she used to imagine kissing girls in those days—how it always involved tugging someone forward by a tie, and the thought is still shockingly potent five years later.
“No, wait, stay there,” she says when Effy—silly round hat perched precariously on her head—seductively crawls over until she’s almost on top of Emily again. She looks puzzled, but only for a second—exactly as long as it takes for Emily to reach for her tie and gently pull on it, just hard enough to bring Effy’s lips in range.
“Should I have put on knickers?” Effy asks, and Emily pushes the hat off her head, watches Effy’s long, thick hair tumble down her shoulders, feels as it brushes past both of their faces when she tugs on the tie again.
“God, no” is the last thing she says for a very long time, trapping all other possible words between their lips.
Sufjan Stevens & Rosie Thomas – The One I Love
It was just a practice run, just a chance for her to actually say the words, but on the good days, she’s beginning to feel like the real thing will be just as easy.
Book Seven: THE NEW YEAR
Bat for Lashes – Sad Eyes
A large part of her is desperate to go downstairs, get Effy, and just get the fuck out of there—because this can’t be right, her own parents might be nutters but they love each other in the right way, don’t fight like this—but it’s not her place, she can’t interfere, and if she were in Effy’s shoes she’d just be mortified that someone else was hearing this.
It’s only about five minutes before the front door slams again and Effy’s dad leaves, but it feels like a lifetime. The door to Effy’s bedroom opens quietly and Effy slips inside, eyes still painfully red but none of the earlier relaxed happiness left in them.
“You should go,” is all she says, and silently hands Emily her coat, before looking down at the ground.
Nouvelle Vague – Love Will Tear Us Apart
u need more,” Effy says, and then sighs. “Because I’m still here, and you’re already worried about how things are going to be, aren’t you.”
“I can’t help that I worry,” Emily says gently, before resting her head on Effy’s shoulder with a sigh of her own. “But it doesn’t mean that I have any—that I ever really think that—”
“I’m sorry, that I stopped you,” Effy interjects, before exhaling shakily. “It’s just hard enough, knowing we’re leaving again soon, and actually hearing you say that—” and as her voice catches, Emily’s heart swells completely at the world of meaning that Effy manages to inject into the absence of those three little words.
Effy clears her throat and Emily leans in—pulls her into an awkward hug, ends up lying halfway on her lap just to be close to her.
Book Eight: TRANSATLANTICISM
Martina Topley-Bird – Phoenix
The phone rings; she tips halfway out of bed and blindly touches around for it, finally ends up grabbing it and presses the big green button with a "’lo?"
"Don’t stop," is all Effy says, but the tone of her voice is just—
"Oh, fuck," Emily exhales and flops back down on to her back. "I’m—ok, wait, I need to get the phone on my shoulder, because I think I want to use both hands, just give me a second."
Effy doesn’t say anything else, just breathes, but it’s so fast that Emily can’t help but smirk a little. "You’re well into this, aren’t you."
"Depends on what happens next," Effy says after a beat, and Emily feels her nipples tighten even more when it’s followed by a slight hitch.
Michelle Featherstone – Stay
The first day, they spend in bed, just lying next to each other, because never before has that been possible without it feeling like a waste.
“We have time,” Effy says quietly, looks at Emily quite seriously before tangling their fingers together. “Let’s actually take it, for once.”
“I can’t believe we have an entire month,” Emily sighs and squeezes Effy’s hand, tightly. “It’s a little surreal, you know?”
Effy just smiles; barely, but it’s there. “Maybe we’ve earned it, by now.”
Jesca Hoop – Love and Love Again
“No, I’m not normally that into fucking myself,” Effy says, and presses a kiss to Emily’s forehead. “You’ve broken me completely.”
Book Nine: A LACK OF COLOR
Charlotte Martin – Steel
Naomi doesn’t flinch. Doesn’t really do anything except turn her head and look away.
The Murmurs – Squeeze Box Days
“You cared once,” Emily says, quietly, and Naomi looks at her sharply.
“We were seventeen. Not to mention stupi—“
“What happened to you out there, Naomi?” Emily blurts out and watches as Naomi’s eyes grow distant, as her mouth sets.
“I grew up,” she says and gets up without another word.
CocoRosie – God Has a Voice, She Speaks Through Me
They’re no longer touching anywhere when they wake up, and Emily rouses Naomi gently.
Naomi blinks at her blearily, eyes still faintly red, and then smiles. “Hey.”
Out of nowhere, Emily feels like shit. “I don’t—I have to go home,” she says, and doesn’t know why her throat feels like it’s closing up, but she can barely breathe.
Naomi just nods; appears to for once understand what Emily is saying without needing more words.
“You’ll be okay?” Emily can’t help but ask, even though she’s already getting to her feet and blindly reaching for her purse.
“Yeah,” Naomi says quietly, and then takes a deep breath. “I think I will.”
Book Ten: DEATH OF AN INTERIOR DECORATOR
Crystal Castles – Courtship Dating
Effy’s mouth is rough; she bites down almost hard and then hisses when Emily tugs on her hair, just does it again in retaliation and Emily groans even as Effy’s fingers find her clit, stroke past it quickly a few times before slipping inside of her.
She bites down on her own hand pre-emptively; needs to when Effy curls her fingers and sucks hard all at once, but then lets go when Effy looks at her straight—fingers still thrusting in and out rapidly and Emily’s hips bucking towards them almost desperately looking for some kind of rhythm.
"Don’t fucking do it again,” Effy says; presses her palm against Emily’s clit, and she rocks up against it even as she’s trying to process what Effy’s saying.
“I don’t share,” Effy says, and shifts in closer, braces her hand with her own knee so she can fuck Emily even harder, and they’re so close now that every time Effy exhales, Emily can feel it on her skin.
“Ef,” Emily manages and tries to pay attention but fuck, her fingers know so much, are rubbing so deliberately that she just can’t.
“I don’t share you,” Effy repeats, almost desperately. “Okay?”
Sarah Jaffe – Backwards/Forwards
“Jesus,” Emily breathes and then lets her head fall back to the mattress. “I think you almost killed me.”
“Sorry,” Effy says, sounding vaguely contrite, fingertips dancing across Emily’s thigh.
“Don’t ever apologize for l—“ Emily starts saying and then stops, because it’s still a fucking assumption and maybe it’s just because she came so hard, but suddenly it’s too much. Her eyes tear up and she rubs at them, feels Effy shift in closer and stroke her arm, then her cheek.
“Sorry,” Effy says again, voice suddenly rough, and Emily starts crying in earnest.
Intermission: WIRES AND WAVES
Gym Class Heroes – 2nd Period: Shoot Down the Stars
"I fucking love her," she says, and then says it again when Tony doesn’t immediately react.
"Is this a practice run?"
She laughs. "I have no idea."
Book Eleven: WE LOOKED LIKE GIANTS
Drake ft. Lykke Li – Little Bit
Effy leans in closer and inhales. “With cinnamon?”
“Mmhmm,” Emily confirms and then swats at Effy’s hand when it snakes out to tear off a piece of pancake. “Barbarian.”
“Ngh,” Effy responds, but obediently goes to sit at the kitchen table.
Phoebe snorts. “Dear God; ladies and gentlemen, the world’s most nauseating monosyllabic couple.”
Effy just smirks, then yawns, and then turns to Emily. “Hey, were you singing earlier?”
“Maybe,” Emily says, balancing the plate of pancakes and some syrup.
“Ah,” Effy says and then winces. “If I pay you, will you promise to never do it again?”
Phoebe starts laughing even as Emily flips her off.
Josh Pyke – Our House Breathing
“No, I mean, I know you’re serious about her, but God. You met the love of your life at age 16.”
“Don’t be—“ Emily starts objecting, but then fleetingly thinks of Effy just once, stretched out on her belly with a satisfied, happy smile, and she can’t. She just can’t. “Yeah. I think I did.”
Missy Higgins – Going North
“Happy Christmas, Em,” Effy says, before leaning in closer and hugging Emily so tight that she can barely breathe. “I love you” is murmured into her neck, and Emily feels like she’s going to liquefy completely, because nobody should be able to mean those three words as much as Effy does.
Fred whimpers and tries to squirm out of Emily’s arms, but they barely notice.
Katie finds them long minutes later, still holding each other in the snow.
Fin: Jose Gonzalez – Heartbeats
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