FOURTY

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"i can't— i can't get the door open!"

seph rolled her eyes, nudging her boyfriend out of the way as he struggled with the car door.

she yanked it open with ease, gloved hands needing just a slight tug to pull it open, "nice one, keery."

joe shook his head with a laugh, moving so that he was holding the door open now instead of her.

"you ruined my attempt to be romantic! besides, you have gloves on and it's ridiculously cold so it's harder for me!" joe protested as seph slipped into the car and he gently shut the door behind her. he ran around to his side, getting in and immediately turning on the warm air conditioning.

the pair were heading for their anniversary meal — one year since finally admitting that, truthfully, they'd been in love with eachother deep down for a long time.

they'd stopped being the type for typically "cringe" romantic gestures, too comfortable with eachother and establishing that it was odd after they'd spent so long, so close, as just best friends.

but tonight was a different matter and celebrating one year together was special to persephone and joe.

"we could've just ordered chinese food, baby," seph pulled down the car mirror to wipe a slight lipstick smudge away, "we didn't have to come out!"

joe shook his head, resting his hand on his girlfriend's knee as the other started the car's engine. "i wanted to take you out. be nice, for once."

seph grinned, eyes focused on her boyfriend beside her. as ever, she was mesmerised by the very sight of him — she couldn't have been more in love with the man if she tried with all of her will.

"you know, if you take a picture it'll last longer." he rolled his eyes and began to pull the car out of the driveway.

"shut up, you muppet," she laughed, "can't a girl admire her boyfriend every once in a while without getting shit for it?"

———

the restaurant was even more fancy than the couple had first anticipated.

it was adorned with endless lights, lit by chandeliers inside, and inhabited by people in suits and dresses that could be likened to ball gowns. joe and seph glanced down at their outfits and bit their lips, "yeah... we're not getting in, are we?"

"worth a shot i guess?"

they entered the restaurant with, at first, glowing confidence. striding over to the front desk, joe clasped seph's hand and cleared his throat.

"table for two — under the name joe keery?"

the man said nothing at first, eyes scanning up and down both persephone and joe's outfits with a stoic look.

"sorry, i'm afraid i'm not going to be able to let you in here today. your outfits are, unfortunately, not in line with the company's dress code."

seph bit her lip, mumbling an apology under her breath with slight embarrassment as a few people turned to look at them.

"didn't think so, it's no problem. we'll have to take our anniversary dinner elsewhere. thank you." joe was curt and ever so slightly snappy in his tone, swivelling on his heel to turn and leave the restaurant with seph at his side.

"shit is that joe keery and seph jaydon?" a voice startled the pair, who whipped round to see a young waitress ogling at them beside the staff member who had turned them away.

"who?" he queried, glancing back at the couple with confusion etched all over his features.

the girl rolled her eyes with a scoff, "you don't know them? what the hell — he's from stranger things and she's literally a music icon? for god's sake, phil, are you that uncultured?"

the man looked stern and, undoubtedly, incredibly offended by the waitress' words.

"excuse me! sir, ma'am come back! i'm sure there's a table somewhere for such an adorable couple to share their anniversary meal at." the desperation in his tone made seph laugh and shake her head.

"we'd rather go somewhere we're welcome from the offset, thank you. we're not interested — but yeah... thank you i suppose."

they waltzed out of the restaurant in a fit of giggles, heading back to the car and chuckling about the fact that they'd not even been recognised, firstly, but had then been begged to return purely because of their social standing.

seph grinned, pressing a soft kiss to her boyfriend's lips as his hand cupped her face and he gently pushed her against the side of his car. "you look beautiful tonight, have i told you that yet princess?"

"thank you baby, you don't look too shabby yourself. oh, and one other thing—"

"hm?"

"i told you we should've just gotten a chinese, huh."

———
WHAT A FUCKING SHIT EXCUSE FOR A FINAL CHAPTER :(
i'd carry it on if i wasn't swamped with endless essays for sixth form i'm so sorry
i'll be doing bonus chapters (eg i have a christmas one part written) so keep an eye out
acknowledgements will be posted soon as usual :)

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