one: the playful conversation starts

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Brooklyn has just finished blow-drying her hair when she hears noises coming from her kitchen. If she were still living alone like she did a few months back, she would have immediately reached for the bat that she keeps under her bed for safety purposes before she leaves her room. But since her twin brother, Beck, moves in with her after he broke up with his girlfriend, she knows that it's him who's making the noises right now.

Taking one last look at the mirror, she lets out a sigh and makes her way to the kitchen where, unsurprisingly, she finds Beck pouring a freshly brewed coffee into a cup. But it isn't just any cup. It's her favourite cup – the one she got for Christmas two years ago.

"What're you doing?" Brooklyn asks as she opens the cabinet and takes out a cereal box. Beck jumps slightly at the sound of her voice, but he immediately plasters a smile across his face.

"Good morning," he grins, pretending as though he hasn't heard her question.

"Morning," she replies before repeating herself, "What're you doing?"

"Making coffee for you," he replies. He hands Brooklyn her yellow mug that has a painting of a small bee on the middle, to which she accepts hesitantly. He watches her face to gauge her reaction and gets slightly offended when she only stares at the brown coloured liquid in the mug instead of drinking it. "Don't look so shocked. I've worked at a coffee shop before, 'member?"

She does remember him working at a coffee shop briefly during their first year of university because she took full advantage of that every single day. She remembers going to that café before or after or sometimes before and after her class to get coffee at a slightly cheaper price because Beck's the one who made it.

Still, that doesn't explain why he's making her coffee. This isn't the Beck she knows and grows with. He doesn't wake up early in the morning just to make coffee for her or anyone, really. He loves his sleep more than anything.

So, curious, Brooklyn kinks an eyebrow at him. "Not to sound ungrateful, but what's this for?"

"Everything, I guess." He answers with a shrug. He moves to pouring cereal and milk into the two bowls that he's taken out from the cabinet, avoiding eye contact for a moment. Brooklyn waits for him to explain and after having shoved a spoonful of cereal, he finally says, "For dealing with me after, you know, and for letting me stay here and not kicking me out."

"That's what families do," she says. Despite how irritating Beck can be or how unconventional it is to live with him, Brooklyn realises that she'd do anything for him. Even if it means letting him live with her indefinitely.

That statement, however, earns her a scoff from Beck, who then shakes his head. "I doubt Oliver would let me crash at his place."

Beck's right. Their older brother, Oliver, wouldn't easily let anyone crash at his place. "Well, Oli does love his privacy."

"Too much," Beck mutters with a roll of his eyes. Unlike Oliver, Beck doesn't particularly enjoy being alone. "Remember when he wouldn't let us come near his room?"

"Us?" Brooklyn repeats. She doesn't remember Oliver ever telling her that she couldn't come near his room. In fact, she spent a lot of times in his room back then, going through his vinyl collection and listening to them with her brother – or alone when he's not around. "I'm pretty sure that rules only applies to you."

"That's unfair," he remarks, brows furrowing. "I knew it: he loves you more."

Brookyln nudges him in the shoulder and grins. "Hey, what can I say? I'm very lovable."

under my skin || n.h. auWhere stories live. Discover now