Title: It's Not You, It's Mindy
Disclaimer: Very much not mine.
Summary: "This is the weirdest breakup ever."
Note: It's Danny/Mindy, although she isn't technically in this fic. Also, I'm sure this will… you know, not happen in the coming weeks, so I just wanted to get it in now.
It's just shy of a month into his relationship with Alex and they're hanging out in her apartment on a Sunday afternoon when Danny decides he's got to just bite the bullet already.
"So, listen," he starts, his hands shoved into the pockets of his jeans. He starts to pace the floor behind her couch, and she glances up, watching from where she's draped lazily in an armchair. "Is it me, or is this thing with us not really…"
She lets out a sort of nervous laugh and tosses the crossword puzzle she'd been working on onto the coffee table. "No," she says. "To be honest, I've actually been thinking the same thing lately."
"Oh." He stops pacing and brightens a bit in relief. "Okay. Wow. I thought that was going to be –"
"I know," she agrees.
"I mean, you're a great girl."
"And you're a great guy."
"And not to be cliché or anything, but honestly, it's really not you, it's me."
"Yeah, no, totally. I get it," she says. She shrugs and sits up in the chair. "I don't think it's either of us, it just… is." A beat, and then she adds, lightly, "Actually, I think it's Mindy."
"What? Mindy?" he says, and his voice cracks a little bit. "No. I mean, no, are you kidding? Mindy's not… We're just – we're coworkers. I mean, we're friends, too, I guess. It's just…" He trails off when Alex's mouth drops open. "What?"
"Ohhhhh," she says, all drawn out, like he's just uncovered some great secret of the universe.
"What?" he demands. "Don't just say that. Don't say 'ohhhhh' like that."
"You like her."
Danny considers this and shrugs, scratching at the back of his head. "Well, yeah. I like her. I work with her."
"No, I mean…" Alex makes her eyes wide and spreads her arms out wide for emphasis. "You LIKE her."
He pulls a face. "What? Wait a second. You just said maybe Mindy was the reason this wasn't working between us. I was just trying to clarify…"
"Yeah, I meant, because she and I are good friends and you guys work together and maybe that's why the two of us dating feels kind of awkward," she says. "I didn't realize you, you know, LIKED her, though."
"I don't. I don't, I mean…" He does a weird little half-cough, half-laugh sputter. "Mindy and I are not… like that."
"Well, I know. Not now, you're not. You were just dating me up until a minute ago," she points out.
"Do you not even see it?" His face is blank, and she bites her lip. "I guess that makes sense. I didn't see it until this, but now it's like… I can't unsee it." He opens his mouth, and she adds, "And not in a bad way, I'm just saying I don't know how it wasn't obvious before."
He drops onto her couch with a frown and sits silently for a few moments, processing. "You think me and Mindy are obvious?"
"Well… yeah." She gets up from the chair and perches on the arm of the couch. "Have you really never thought about it before?"
"Uh… I mean, not like…" He crosses his arms over his chest. "She's not unattractive, okay?"
Alex smiles. "So you think she's hot."
He makes a series of deciding noises before settling on, "…Yeah. Yeah, okay? I think she's hot."
"And she's a lot of fun, right?"
He hesitates again, and she prods his thigh with her foot. "Yeah, I guess so." With a low chuckle, he admits, "You couldn't exactly call her boring."
"Right," she agrees. "And you like being around her?"
"I – well…" Danny lets out a frustrated sort of growl and rubs the back of his head. "She can make you crazy, okay? She's just – she's ridiculous, with the sparkles, and there's like a million pairs of shoes in her office – I mean, she has so many she has actually hidden some in my office when I wasn't looking!" He scoffs, like this is unbearably insane behavior. "And she wants to take me shopping with this look book thing, so… what? I can have as many clothes as she does? I don't know! Have you ever been in her closet?"
"Um, yeah. Have you?"
"Yeah, and it's –" He stops when he sees her eyebrows shoot up into her hairline. "We were going on this double date thing, and this outfit she was wearing was just… I was trying to help her get laid, okay?"
Alex watches as he gets up and starts pacing around again, a small grin creeping across her face. "Mm-hmm," she encourages.
"And she dates these ridiculous – you've seen them! These cheeseball guys who wear pocket squares and use mousse, and then she's walks around all sad for a week when they inevitably break up, and she gets mad if you don't, you know, mourn this relationship with her." He laughs a little bit. "Also, her taste in music sucks. She doesn't even know who Bob Dylan is, okay? She calls him Jakob Dylan's dad. And let's not even talk about those stupid celebrity gossip rags she loves so much. Bennifer, and Brangelina, and, you know, who even cares?"
"I mean, I don't care," he continues. "I shouldn't know anything about those people, and yet I do. And to be honest, I don't know why it has to come up in meetings so often. Kate Middleton is not one of our patients."
"Okay, you're right. You're right. Those are all very Mindy things," Alex says calmly. She grabs his arm and gestures for him to sit on the couch again. When he does, she leans in and asks, "But do you like being around her?"
He takes a deep breath and presses his lips together, thinking. Finally, he shrugs and says, "Yeah," and then, quietly, "Shit."
She smiles. "See?"
He groans and scrubs a hand down his face. "I didn't see this coming."
She pats his shoulder. "I know you didn't, sweetie."
"Okay, don't…" he leans in, almost as if to beg her, "don't say any of this to Mindy. Please."
"Oh, I won't, don't worry." She grins. "You're going to have to work up the nerve to do that on your own."
He swallows hard, his face suddenly ashen. "Oh, God."
"I don't know…"
Alex rolls her eyes at him. "I'm not saying go over there right this second and tell her. I'm saying now that you've had this realization, don't ignore it." She puts a hand on his arm to get him to look at her. "Just don't wait too long, okay? I mean, think about how much it would suck to see her marry some other guy."
He blows out a breath. "That would suck."
"Yeah," she agrees. She squeezes his hand. "You'll figure it out. It'll be okay." She holds out her arms. "Now give me a hug."
Danny leans over and hugs her distractedly, his thoughts still racing. "This is the weirdest breakup ever," he says, and she laughs.