Pairing: Light/Early Pearlidot
Warnings: swearing (once/twice)
Summary: It started with loud music. Somehow, maybe they'll tolerate each other.
College was supposed to be fun; hardworking and tiring, yes, but fun nonetheless. At least, that's what Pearl was told when she first stepped onto the grounds of her new campus a week ago. Friends waved their opinions of how great it was supposed to be in her face. Her family shoved it down her throat.
Pearl couldn't argue that it wasn't enjoyable; the classes were interesting and kept her questioning her previous knowledge and yearning for more, and the campus itself was relatively clean. But after spending her day studying and at lectures, sometimes spending an hour with Garnet and Amethyst in between, she just wanted to collapse into her bed and rest for at least a few minutes.
She'd only been here for a week, and already Pearl felt her patience and tolerance snapping. She asked for a dorm to herself for a specific reason; for peace and quiet. And whilst she technically did get exactly what she asked for, she was not pleased to know that her next door neighbour wasn't so peaceful. Maybe she should've asked for an entire hallway to herself.
Pearl threw her keys on the kitchen counter, letting out an irritated growl at her neighbour's headache-inducing music thudding through the paper thin walls. Running a hand through her short peach hair as a reaction to stress, she flipped the kettle on to boil. If she was going to keep quiet about the racket her party-goer neighbour was making, she needed to inhale two litres of tea right that second.
At least the whistling of the boiling kettle was rivalling the deafening music.
Groaning and massing her temple, Pearl sunk onto a stool, crossing one leg over the other as she pried a book off her kitchen table. Maybe she could drown at the insufferable music by letting her mind run wild in the world of fiction.
A steady beat and deep bass vibrated the walls, even making her teaspoon next to her mug rattle against the ceramic countertop.
No, apparently she couldn't drown out the music.
Folding her book, barely even chancing a glance at the words on the page, Pearl trudged to the now boiled kettle, pouring herself a cup of caffeinated tea (she almost chose camomile tea, but she needed a wake up call). She watched in disdain the ripples cast in her tea with each beat.
She decided the second she finished her tea, she was going to solve this dispute with her neighbour.
Bitterly, Pearl thought, At least Garnet and Amethyst don't make this much noise.
Flicking a glance towards the walls away from the source of music, she thought about what her friends would do if they were in her position. Pearl laughed to herself. Knowing them, they'd encourage and join in with her neighbour, no doubt it. But alas, Garnet and Amethyst were a few doors too far away to be bothered by the music.
After roughly fives minutes of passive-aggressively sipping her tea, Pearl finished her drink and placed the mug in her sink, quickly filling it with water and dishwashing liquid.
So, maybe she lied. Maybe she was going to see her disrupting neighbour after she did the dishes. She couldn't leave the house dirty, after all.
Drying her hands on the tea-towel draped on the oven handle, Pearl took a deep breath. She had given her neighbour plenty of time to lower the volume of her intolerable music, and yet the past week was still filled with the sounds of bass rumbling through her house. She forced on a proud smile; at least now she'd get the peace and quiet she ordered.
After grabbing her keys and locking the door after her, she pocketed them in her pale pink denim shorts. Taking a deep breath through her nose and stressfully running a hand through her hair again, she knocked on her neighbour's door with her other hand.
After a few moments, Pearl wondered if she was heard. Frowning, trying to refrain from grounding her teeth, she knocked again, this time with more force.
"Just a moment!" someone called out from behind the door, their voice high-pitched and squeaky. A… unique tone, but Pearl wouldn't call it entirely pleasant.
And as promised, a moment later the door creaked open a few inches, half a face poking out through it. The figure, the top of their head barely reaching Pearl's collarbones, raised an eyebrow underneath large glasses skeptically.
"May I help you?" they asked, their tone indicating that, no, they didn't want to help Pearl at all.
Pearl wasn't sure if she was talking to a girl or a computer. Their tone had changed to something more tolerable now that they weren't shouting, but Pearl couldn't help thinking they sounded like one of the text-to-speech AIs on her computer.
Along with that, Pearl visibly flinched as the music raised in volume with the door semi-open.
"Yes, actually," she answered curtly, placing both of her hands on her hips in a mother-like fashion. "Your music is excessively loud, and I've had to tolerate it for a week. Could you please keep it down in the future?"
The figure looked her up and down with one visible eye. "And you are?"
"Your neighbour." Pearl narrowed her eyes at the other person, noticing a few wild blonde locks sticking up in weird angles on their head. With reluctance, she extended her hand. "Pearl."
The other person glared at her for a moment with the visible eye, then opened the door a few more inches, exposing most of their face. Her neighbour was now glaring at her with two (alluring) green eyes under giant glasses, their pale cheeks puffing up as they huffed. Faint freckles dotted those cheeks, some straying onto their forehead and jaw. Pearl took her chances and guessed they were a female rather than a computer in disguise.
"Peridot," her neighbour greeted, gingerly shaking Pearl's offered hand. She retracted it to her side, sticking it into the pocket of her bright green hoodie. "Sorry, I can't turn down the music."
Pearl stifled a frustrated growl. "Why not?"
"Don't want to." And with that, Peridot slammed her door closed, leaving a stunned and rather aggravated Pearl standing in the hall.
Pearl seethed, almost baring her teeth in an animal like fashion. "Peridot!"
She rapped her knuckles on the door furiously, but received no reply from her neighbour.
"Tell me 'bout it," someone commented a few metres away from Pearl, and she whipped around to see a short girl leaning against the doorframe on the other side of Peridot's dorm. She seemed to be sipping a cup of coffee, and glanced at Pearl with tired eyes. "I've tried talking to her as well, but the same thing happened."
"It's infuriating!" Pearl almost screeched. "I've barely tolerated it for a week!"
The other girl shrugged, her golden hair waving off her shoulders. "Maybe you'll get used to it? I'm trying to. Or maybe you can try tomorrow."
Pearl eyed her neighbour suspiciously, but a small determined smile curled her lips. "Perhaps."
"Where are my manners, I'm Sadie," the other girl introduced with a lazy smile.
Sadie hummed, taking a sip of her coffee and then raising it in the air. "Good luck."
Pearl merely ached an eyebrow as the smaller girl slipped back into her dorm, quietly closing the door behind her. Pearl re-entered hers, falling to the navy carpet and banging the back of her head on the door. "Thanks, I'm going to need it."
The next day, Pearl returned home to the same loud ear-splitting music. With Peridot's music shaking her dorm with every beat, Pearl frustratedly slammed her door shut and stalked to Garnet's and Amethyst's shared dorm.
Five minutes later, she found herself situated on Garnet's bed, sipping a mug of cranberry tea as she death-stared the small gap between her two friends.
She switched that gaze onto Amethyst when she howled with laughter. "Oh man P, your neighbour is giving you a really hard time!"
"Shut up Amethyst, her music is terrible and loud," Pearl stubbornly snapped back, glaring at Amethyst with fire burning in her eyes.
"Woah, save the death-stares for your neighbour," Amethyst warned, holding her hands up in defeat. "It's just a tad funny, you gotta admit. Right, Garnet?"
"Amusing to us, irritating to Pearl," Garnet corrected, sending a small sympathetic smile to Pearl. "Try to reason with her every day, your persistence may win out. If it doesn't, I'm sure you can take it to the staff."
"Yeah, you're really good at arguing P," Amethyst unhelpfully encouraged. "Did you give her a piece of your mind today?"
Pearl took another sip, hiding her victorious smile behind her mug. She knew she shouldn't be, but she was proud that she was a stubborn conversationalist. "No, but I wanted your advice before I did."
"Well, I'm agreeing with Garnet. Use your verbal superpowers to like, convince her or whatever!" Amethyst sent Pearl a giant toothy grin, and the latter felt some of her previous stress unwind. Amethyst's enthusiastic mood was contagious, and Pearl found herself glad that despite her friend's ability to peeve her with anything she did, Amethyst could always cheer her up.
"Peridot's lucky we're not her neighbours," Garnet mused, then glanced at Amethyst. "Well, I'm not her neighbour. Her door would've been smashed down by now."
Pearl giggled; Garnet wasn't a violent person, but with her physical towering appearance and stoic attitude, she was intimidating enough.
Pearl took her final sip of the tea and took it up to the sink, absentmindedly washing it. Amethyst snorted.
"Dude, you don't have to do our dishes."
"Nonsense," Pearl replied with a pleased hum as she hung up the mug on the dish rack. "It was my tea, so I should clean it. Now if you'll excuse me, I'll be kicking Peridot's butt."
"Yeah, you go P!" Amethyst called out behind Pearl, raising her fist in the air triumphantly, Garnet offering an semi-enthusiastic cheer over her shoulder. Pearl allowed herself a coy smile as she closed her friends' door behind her, striding down the hallway to stand in front of Peridot's door.
The music was once again deafening, but she wasn't going to let her better mood disappear so quickly. She tapped her knuckles against the rough wood of Peridot's door four times, crossing her arms behind her back afterwards.
The door creaked open slightly, one of Peridot's eyes glancing at Pearl through the slit. She held a coffee mug to her lips, and bags were under her eyes. "Oh, it's you."
"Yes," Pearl affirmed, glancing at her obviously tired neighbour. "I would like you to turn your music down, please."
Peridot groaned. "Look lady, I'm paying for this apartment, and I'm going to have my music turned up as loud as I want to."
"I wasn't asking." Pearl sent a cold glare at her neighbour. "You're disrupting not only me, but other neighbours."
"Go. Away." Peridot slammed her door shut, but Pearl caught it in time, shoving her foot between the door and its frame. She winced as the wood bit into the side of her foot.
Peridot stared wide-eyed at Pearl's braveness, then shrieked, "What are you doing!?"
"You are going to lower the volume of your music," Pearl instructed, glaring at the one visible green eye of Peridot.
Peridot huffed, staring at Pearl with annoyance. "Why should I?"
"I already told you, you're disrupting nei—"
"Okay! I get it!" Peridot yelled. "But maybe I like my music, alright!?"
Pearl sighed. "Just turn it down a bit, okay?"
"Move your foot first," the smaller girl commanded.
"Only if you promise to turn down your music."
"Okay, I promise I'll turn it down! Just move your bloody foot!" Peridot snapped.
Pearl frowned but obeyed nonetheless. The door locked shut.
"Psyche!" Peridot cried out over her music.
Pearl banged her fist against the door, her face twisting with fury. "Turn down the music!"
"No! Leave me alone, you fucking clod!"
Pearl seethed, a scowl darkening her vision. With a defeated sigh, she entered her dorm, glaring at the rattling objects in the room.
By the third day of trying, Pearl was ready to take the problem to the staff. She was not normally an impatient person, but Peridot's music was becoming unbearable. After an evening class, Pearl staggered through her hallway, glaring daggers at Peridot's door as she passed it.
With an ounce of determination, she dropped her luggage in her room and immediately stomped back out, not bothering with drinking tea to calm her nerves beforehand. She knocked on Peridot's door, beginning to lose hope of talking this problem out.
There was the sound of things falling and rattling in Peridot's dorm before the door opened. This time, instead of only a partial amount of Peridot's face being visible, she threw the door open halfway. Pearl glanced down at her neighbour, finally seeing Peridot in full for the first time. Pearl absolutely hated the fact that she found her attractive, but moved on from that thought.
"Peridot, I'm not ask—"
She was cut off as Peridot slammed the door in her face without a word. Pearl growled, her temper snapping. I didn't even get to finish what I was saying!
Then Pearl's eyes widened in shock. The music was decreasing in volume. She finally got through Peridot's thick head. Pearl almost jumped in joy, before the door slowly opened again.
Peridot slumped a little, avoiding eye contact. With a sniffle, she pushed her glasses further up her nose and apologised, "Sorry I've been an ass."
Pearl offered a weak smile. "Um, thank you."
"You got what you want," Peridot snarled half-heartedly. "Now leave me alone."
Peridot closed the door behind her with nowhere near as much vigour as she had the previous two days. Pearl knew that she shouldn't interfere with other people's affairs, go against their wishes, invade their personal space, but something seemed off about Peridot's demeanour. She placed her arm between the door and the frame, and lightly pushed it open again. Peridot remained silent.
"Are you okay?" Pearl asked, worry seeping into her tone.
"Don't you get what 'go away' means?" Peridot deadpanned, her back turned to Pearl.
Pearl nodded even though Peridot couldn't see, and backed away from the door. At least she got what she wanted; peace and quiet. As the door squeaked shut and Pearl turned away, a hand shot out from the room and grasped Pearl's wrist. She glanced down at the tiny hand making contact with her skin, her sky blue eyes wide with shock.
Peridot's head hid behind the door. "Wait! I decided I don't want to be left alone."
Pearl admired her honesty; she too knew how it felt to push everyone away when all she really wanted was someone to stay. She never had the guts to say that though.
"Oh, um…" Pearl began, her cheeks heating up slightly. "Would you like me to stay?"
Peridot nodded meekly, widening her door further open.
The only reason I'm doing this is because she turned her music down, Pearl reasoned with herself, taking a small step after Peridot.
Peridot's dorm was much like Pearl's; whilst all the rooms in the building had the same or similar template, Peridot's was also rather clean and organised. Dishes still littered the sink, and some things were scattered across the ground, but everything was in neat piles, even if they were in random and erratic places. Pearl glanced at the walls, observing a few of the posters taped up; they were all electronic producers and video games that she had never heard of.
Peridot laid herself on the navy carpet, staring at the dull light globe above her head. Pearl awkwardly glanced around the room; was she supposed to sit on the floor too or?
"You can sit anywhere," Peridot grumbled behind the arm she lifted up to shield her face.
"O-okay." Pearl glanced around the room one last time before sinking cross-legged next to Peridot, but not too close. "Did you want to talk?"
"Can I learn about you?" Peridot asked, cocking her head to the side to gaze at Pearl.
Pearl blushed a little, noticing a few wild strands of Peridot's hair falling over her face. "After calling me a flipping clod?"
"A fucking clod," Peridot corrected sourly, but sighed. "Sorry, I don't like making friends."
"You don't have to make friends with me, I just wanted you to turn down your music," Pearl assured, an awkward smile curling her lips. "And you did that."
Peridot fidgeted, returning her gaze to her forearm. "I was thinking maybe I could make an exception for you. Friends, that is, since we're neighbours."
Pearl sent a startled look at Peridot. "You're full of surprises."
Peridot waved her hands in front of herself sarcastically. "Surprise."
Pearl raised an eyebrow at the act. "So you wanted to know about me?"
"Yeah. I can tell you about my kick-ass life too."
"Well…" Pearl trailed off, staring at the ceiling as she composed her thoughts. "My major is music, I love to sing but I also play the violin and piano. I spend most of my time studying, so I don't really get out much, and excluding my friends from high school, you're the first student I've talked to at this college."
Peridot hummed her approval. "I'm majoring in game design, along with programming and engineering classes. That should be a big enough clue that I'm a huge nerd. My favourite word is 'clod', and my most hated one is 'cute'. That's about as interesting as I get. But, um, I'm honoured you talked to me."
Pearl laughed. "I yelled at you to turn your music down. How can you be honoured?"
"W-well, you wouldn't be here now if you didn't!" Peridot exclaimed, shielding her face with both of her arms.
"True." Pearl found herself gazing at where Peridot's face should've been, eyes trailing down her body and sizing her up. If she was honest, her neighbour looked really good in a green flannel shirt and black skinny jeans. "Why did you want me to stay?"
"I think you're… cool."
"Cool?" Pearl raised an eyebrow skeptically. "You barely know me, especially before opening your door."
Peridot fidgeted more intensely, rolling away from Pearl entirely. "W-well, maybe I find you attractive too!"
Pearl felt heat spread across her cheeks fast. A few people she knew had called her attractive before, but never a stranger.
"O-oh! Um, thank you Peridot," Pearl stuttered, a smile curling her lips without her approval. Hesitantly, she laid down next to Peridot, leaving comfortable room between them. She stared at the ceiling, trailing the stains somehow marked there with her eyes. With silence falling between the newly acquainted, Pearl finally recognised the quiet music playing in the background. Surprisingly, it didn't sound too bad now that it wasn't blaring.
"You know, your music isn't half bad when it's quiet."
"I made a promise. And now I know if I ever want you over, I'll just turn my music up."
Pearl smiled. Maybe Peridot wouldn't be as insufferable as she thought she would be.
A/N: my first prompt fic! based off the prompt - "Person A is listening to really loud, weird psychedelic music. Person B lives right below them, so one day they go to complain to person A but when they get to the door, oh no person A is hot and they somehow find themselves laying on the floor of person A's apartment listening to this weird music, and it's not that bad." from otpprompts on tumblr
it's almost certain i will do more, but i'm not sure if i want to post each prompt separately, post them in bulk based on ship, or post them in bulk for all prompt fics ( this will become the fic where i'll post them all). if you review, please tell me which you'd prefer/think is better! i'm leaning towards the last two options