Grayson Gilbert

Grayson Gilbert & Miranda Sommers

                                M I S S   M Y S T I C   F A L L S

Miss Mystic Falls was one of Grayson’s favorite events, given his past history with it. It was all thanks to Mason’s mother that he lost his virginity to a contestant during Freshman year. Now in his junior year, he was once again dressed in his best suit and ready to stand-in if the need arose. Grayson stood at the bottom of the stairs and waited for the girls to be called, one by one for their dance.

Miranda was already severely annoyed (which was a complete front for how nervous she actually was). One wardrobe malfunction, two lost earrings, and three texts from Thomas Fell later, and here she was, about to begin one of the most stressful afternoons of her life … sans escort. Thomas had food poisoning. She had told him not to mess with that questionable guacamole dip last night. Did he listen? Of course not. So, as her name was called, she was faced with having to walk down those stairs to some unknown— a boy whose name she couldn’t even remember. It wouldn’t have bothered her so much, except for that she was a perfectionist, and this was hardly what she’d call ‘perfection.’

Grayson looked up the stairs wondering what happened to Miranda Sommers. It wasn’t that he particularly cared to see her, but she had spent so many weeks talking about it in class, that it would be unusual if she hadn’t showed up. She wouldn’t miss this for anything. He hadn’t seen Meredith’s second cousin hanging around either, which was what started his initial confusion. His eyes eventually caught a glimpse of her. She was standing nearly in the shadows of the hallway, because she was last in line due to her last name. Grayson honestly could not believe that Thomas wasn’t here for this and moved between the other guys to ask about her situation as the girls were being announced.

It was all about keeping face, and that was exactly what she was going to do. They called her name last, and she put on her best smile. Any semblance of nervousness and ill feeling evaporated from her expression. She descended the stairs with practiced poise and even natural elegance, and for a moment, she chose to forget that today had been a constant back-and-forth with her sanity. Miranda was determined to enjoy this day, as she had been looking forward to it now for years. From having the color of her dress picked out since birth, more or less (midnight blue, in spite of her mother’s protests that red was clearly superior), to know how she was going to wear her hair since she was six, today was meant to be something she would look back on and smile.

Miss Miranda Sommers, escorted by Mister Grayson Gilbert.”  Mrs. Lockwood declared when it was finally her turn. There was a hint of amusement and pride in her voice. The woman smiled at him, obviously happy that he had stepped up as an escort for Miranda. After all, there wasn’t anything better for pictures than being escorted by a Founder’s son. Grayson stood in absolute suspense, as he watched Miranda’s midnight blue dress drape down the staircase. He couldn’t wait to see how she was going to react to the news. Would she stumble and blush? It was not like she had any idea that he volunteered for the event.

It was in her eyes, on her face, for a split second— the complete and total disbelief, the shock. Her breath caught in her throat, and suddenly, she was wondering how, when, and why this was happening. Then, just as quickly as it appeared, it was gone. She smiled as she met Grayson at the bottom of the staircase. There were so many things she wanted to say to him, but instead, she opted for silence for a few more seconds and for a subtle narrowing of her eyes. When she took his arm and started for the place where they were supposed to conduct the traditional dance, she decided that it was now or never.

"What are you doing?" she asked beneath her breath, lips barely moving, when she was sure no one could hear.

Just as Miranda took his arm, he felt a shock. She literally shocked him. It must have been some form of static on his black suit, he rationalized. Her reaction had been happier than he imagined it would be. Well, at least she couldn’t hate him later for ruining her big day. “I’m about to dance with you.” Grayson replied and took his position in front of her. “Don’t worry, I’m experienced.”

His reply silently infuriated her. She didn’t understand him, what his motives were. There was no way in hell he was doing this out of the kindness of his heart (did that even exist in Grayson Gilbert?). Still, she supposed she should be thankful. “No, I mean, what’s your angle here, Gilbert?” she muttered, keeping her eyes locked with his as they began the dance. Miranda was determined to figure out just what inspired him to swoop in like some high school Clark Kent during her unannounced time of need. It was suspicious, and she wanted answers.

—-

As Miranda stared at him, he stared right back. They danced in circles, doing their near touch moment that he could perform well even if he was blindfolded after doing it so many times.

"It’s a good thing that you picked heels with your outfit, huh?" He remarked, decidedly avoiding her interrogation. "Imagine how funny we would look right now if you hadn’t." Grayson’s eyes moved from her eyes to the tips of their fingers. She was still shorter than him, but at least only by four or five inches.

—-

Miranda bit her tongue, doing what she could to appear unperturbed by his deflection. It was easy to make small talk as they danced. While he knew this routine because of his name, she had made such a project of perfecting it that she was certain she could have done it in her sleep. “Well, I didn’t exactly expect my escort would be Chewbacca,” she bit back a meaner retort, if only because she was fighting a growing nervousness that was settling at the pit of her stomach. “Seriously, you’re freakishly tall.” Miranda amended, the weight and warmth of their stare beginning to really sink beneath her skin.

"You’re a Star Wars fan, really?" Grayson retorted and tried his best to keep a straight face, but that was nearly impossible. So he deserved that she had shot at him, since he started it. "Nice dress, by the way." He complimented, realizing that he never had earlier. "The color really suits you." He added as they made another circle around the courtyard.

—-

"Uh, no," Miranda knitted her eyebrows for a moment, feeling slightly flustered at his assertion. She couldn’t help that her dad was a total Sci-fi afficionado. It was difficult not to pick up on a few things. So, she let that one go. Yet as he complimented her, she was determined to keep face (though the natural reaction to avert her eyes and let the heat rise in her cheeks was a strong one). She instead pressed her lips into a thin line and met his gaze as the dance near its end. "Thank you," her voice was surprisingly genuine. "You don’t look so bad yourself."

When it was time to take Miranda in his arms, Grayson stepped forward and closed some of the distance between them. His right hand moved to her back—- her skin was smooth and soft to the touch—- while his left hand took hers in his. At the musical cue, Grayson took two steps forward and he waited to see if she’d actually let him lead. It was going to forever make him laugh that she would never forget who her escort was. It wasn’t as if he planned on this happening, but he would surely enjoy it in the moment. “You’re going to win.” He whispered, even though he didn’t have to since they were so much closer than before.

There was something surreal about having to be this close to him. She had assumed it would be unfathomably awkward, even painfully uncomfortable, but it wasn’t. In fact, it perplexed her, the sensations that his fingers left in their wake. They were something she couldn’t dwell on, not as she took his hand and held her other one at the rise of his back. The closeness was enough to make her dizzy, and she had no problem allowing him to take the lead. Perhaps it was the situation, the prying eyes and the weight of the moment, that left her so compliant. Regardless, she couldn’t tear her gaze away from his even if she wanted to (and there was a large part of her that did). Nevertheless, his certainty surprised her. What the hell was going on? (Opposite day? God, she didn’t know.) She clenched her jaw into something of a coy smile. “Or risk never hearing the end of it from my obsessive mother.”

"You have to win." Grayson smiled, looking a tad incredulous. "I can’t imagine anyone else taking the crown from you. They would have to face your wrath… that I know so well. Scary." So far everything was going fine and he fleetingly wondered if anyone had noticed they were talking, but he didn’t really care. It was almost over and they rarely had quiet moments like this between them. "Just don’t forget to look surprised."

Miranda withheld the urge to smile bigger than she meant to. Instead, it was something small, nothing overbearing. The fact that Grayson Gilbert could inspire such a gesture from her at all was alarming enough, and she didn’t want to feed his ego. So, she just subtly shook her head. “I’ll try,” she promised loosely, with good-humored sarcasm. As the dance came to an end, she fell quiet, keeping her eyes locked with his as the people around them clapped as they were meant to. It was strange, sharing a normal, quiet moment like this with him. Something about it felt … odd.


PARTNER: Miranda Sommers; part of TVD High School AU.

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