Fandom: Phyllis and Billy (Philly)
Title: Drunk on You
“You want to tell me what the hell you’re trying to do, Jack?” Phyllis stormed into the office, her eyes full of fire. She was tired of feeling guilty, tired of apologizing, but more than anything, she was sick and tired of the scolding from the hypocrites that surrounded her.
Jack didn’t even look away from his computer screen even though her presence made his blood boil. “If you need to speak with me, you’ll need to make an appointment with my secretary. You no longer have the right to just come walking in here like this. You lost that right the day you…” He stopped. He didn’t even want to say the words. The thoughts and images haunted him. Somehow he’d believed knowing the details would make it better–that it would help him accept the truth–that it would help him move on. In truth, all it did was provide him with crystal clear, detailed images that played in his mind like a horror movie.
Phyllis walked over to the desk, standing right in front of him. “You can keep doing this if you want but it’s not going to solve anything.”
“Neither is your stalling. Sign the divorce papers, Phyllis. This marriage is over.”
“And you think sending your pit bull of a sister to berate me is the way to make that happen?”
He glared up at her, “Ashley talked to you?”
“Don’t act like you didn’t know that. She was spouting your rhetoric like a good little soldier.”
“I didn’t send my sister to go after you, but I won’t apologize for it. You tore this entire family apart with your actions. Did you honestly think everyone was just going to look the other way?”
Phyllis breathed in deeply. She knew there was some truth in his words. “I’m not asking anyone to forget or to pretend nothing happened, but you and I both know we weren’t okay, Jack. There were problems long before this happened.”
He stood, walking around the desk and standing close to her. There were many things she could have said to hurt him, many things that would have made him angry, but this particular accusation enraged him–mostly because he knew, in his heart, it was partly true.
“Don’t you do that. Don’t you try to pin this on me?”
Phyllis stepped back a bit, Jack’s sudden burst of emotion giving her pause. “I’m not saying it’s your fault. I’m just saying we both…”
“No!” Jack’s voice was louder still this time. “WE nothing…WE didn’t cheat…WE didn’t lie…WE didn’t betray this marriage. This was all you.” He leaned in close to her, his face mere inches from hers. “This is all on you and you deserve everything you’re likely to get.”
She held her breath trying to maintain her composure until he walked from the room. Then, she crumbled to the floor.
Billy glanced at his watch. It was late. He’d lost track of time working on Brash & Sassy’s latest campaign which, given the sad state of his life, wasn’t exactly a bad thing. Still, he gathered his coat and flipped the lights, heading towards the elevator and mentally preparing himself to spend yer another night alone.
The elevator door opened and his eyes immediately fell on the lights pouring from Jack’s open office. A sign, he wondered? But of what? That he should go try to make amends for the hundredth time? That he should finally wise up and cut his losses? Walk away while he still can?
He sighed, stepping off the elevator and walking towards the open door. He always had been a slow learner.
Phyllis filled the glass again, spilling a bit over the side, her aim now far from reliable.
“Phyllis?” Billy said, stopping at the doorway.
Phyllis looked up at him, drinking the contents of the glass in one quick gulp. She grimaced before responding. “Not now, Billy.”
He stepped in the office, surveying the scene. “How many of those have you had?”
“Doesn’t matter,” she muttered.
Billy walked over to the table, gently pulling the bottle away from her. “I think maybe you just let me take you home.”
“Home?” Phyllis huffed. “I’m a grown woman living in my daughter’s apartment. I don’t have a home.”
“I’m a grown man living in a house that belongs to my other, so there’s that.” He tried to coax a smile out of her, but he could see her night would require more than a few jokes.
“This isn’t funny. My life…” She reached for the bottle again.
“Uh. Uh. I really think you’ve reached your limit here.” He glanced at the bottle. “This wasn’t full was it?”
Phyllis shrugged slowly.
Billy sighed. “Ok, Come on. We need to get you out of here before this really goes off the rails.”
“Noooo…” Phyllis whined her words now slurring a bit. “I can’t go to the Summer’s. I can’t…she’ll…” She stopped. Her words weren’t coming out right.
Billy nodded, placing his arm around her waist and supporting her weight as he pulled her up. “It’s ok. I’ll take care of it. Just trust me.”
Billy walked to the passenger side door, opening the door and helping her out.
“Just leave me alone,” she groaned, pulling away from him. “I destroy everything. I deserve it. He said that…he said I deserve it.”
“Hey,” he whispered, “Come on.” She was too drunk to resist him and he easily wrapped her in his arms and lifted her from the car. “I gotta say, I’m kinda impressed you’re still conscious.”
He struggled to open the lock and finally managed to push the door open. He stepped inside and gently placed her on the chair by the window.
“I’m gonna go get you some water, ok? We need to try to get some other fluids in you. It’ll make the morning a little easier.”
Billy stood, watching her for a moment before turning and walking into the kitchen. He filled a glass with water and headed back into the living room.
“Phyllis,” he said, startled to see her learning over the bar cart. He rushed over to her grabbing for the glass. “No, you don’t need any more of that.”
She jerked back, spilling the entire contents of the glass down her dress.
“Now look,” she yelled, swaying backwards until he caught her.
“You know what,” he said with a sigh, “I think that’s enough for you for one night.” In one quick swoop, she was in his arms and he was carrying her up the stairs.
It was clear the alcohol was beginning to take effect as she started to fade in and out of consciousness. Thank God Jill and Colin weren’t here to see this, he thought.
Billy stared at her scotch soaked dress, the smell of the alcohol pungent as it soaked into the fabric. He gently placed a pillow under her head before removing his own shirt. He carefully unzipped her dress and wrapped his shirt around her, making quick work of the buttons.
She stirred, her fingertips roaming over his bare chest.
He leaned down, brushing her hair away from her face as she suddenly turned and pressed her lips against his.
The feel of it was as intoxicating as any liquor he’d ever tasted and yet he still knew he had to pull away. As he did, he looked at her, his eyes staring into hers–which, for the moment, we’re open and shining up at him. He ran his hands through her hair, breathing in deeply, realizing in that moment he was making the decision to walk away–even though he knew it wasn’t what he wanted. It was the right thing…the only thing. He kissed her forehead gently, covered her with a blanket, and walked downstairs.
Billy turned towards the stairs, smiling slightly as he saw her still wearing his shirt. If only, he thought…
She squinted, the sunlight from the window causing her head to pound and she nodded gratefully as Billy quickly walked over and pulled the curtains closed.
“Aspirin?” He offered, holding out his hand and offering her two white pills and a glass of water. “I also have dry toast if you’re feeling adventurous.”
Phyllis forced a smile, swallowing the aspirin and taking a seat on the couch beside him.
She studied Billy intently for a moment before speaking. “Billy.” She glanced down at the shirt she wore. She touched it, looking up at him, her eyes questioning.
Billy understood. “What do you remember?”
Phyllis brought her hand to her head. “It’s all kind of fuzzy. I remember a lot of scotch in Jack’s office and I remember your car…and maybe a kiss.” She looked up at him, not sure if she wanted him to confirm or deny her suspicious.
“Yeah,” he said softly. “I found you in Jack’s office. You were already plenty trashed and you clearly had no plans of slowing down so I decided to bring you back here. Then you still tried to get yourself another drink and I tried to stop you…”
Phyllis nodded. “My dress…I remember.”
“yeah, you pretty much dumped your entire drink down the front of your dress, so I gave you my shirt so I could try and save your dress. It’s in the laundry now.”
She nodded, giving him a moment to see if he’d continue. When he didn’t, she spoke again, “So, about the kiss…”
He looked down. “Look, you were in and out by the time I got you upstairs. I was just trying to make sure you were comfortable. You kissed me and I pulled away. That’s it. Nothing happened. I left you upstairs and I came and slept downstairs.”
Her sigh of relief couldn’t be missed and he felt of twinge of pain as he watched her.
“Thank you,” she said quietly.
He smiled. “Really? You’re thanking me now for being a decent human being? What was I supposed to do? You had no idea what you were doing. You were completely wasted. I couldn’t do that to you.”
She was quiet. “I know…I didn’t mean it like that. I meant thank you for all of it, for taking care of me.”
Billy nodded. “You’re welcome.” He looked at her. “You wanna tell me what happened that had you trying to drink yourself into oblivion?”
“Oh you know–the usual. I tried to talk to Jack. He told me I was a horrible person who destroyed our marriage and betrayed him. Basically told me I deserved every bad thing that was likely to happen to me. Of course that was only after Ashley had a go at me. I think I was just done–just over it.”
“I get that,” Billy said quietly. He looked at her, his eyes softening. “I’m sorry that happened to you. You don’t deserve that. You deserve good things–all good things.”
Phyllis was quiet, her mind spinning as the reality settled in on her. She’d spent hours laying in his bed thinking this morning and now, she was more certain that ever before.
“It’s so strange,” she whispered.
“What is?” He asked.
“This morning when I woke up I felt like I’d been hit by a truck, like I’d swallowed a birdcage, like my head had been used like a bongo drum, but my overwhelming thought was that you were here. I walked down the stairs and my head was throbbing, but I looked up and you were here. Last night when I needed you, I looked up and you were there. It’s like we’re right back where we started.”
“I don’t understand,” Billy said.
“I’m sorry. I’m talking in circles…it’s almost like everything had to fall apart, like the world had to burn down around us, like we had to lose everything so we could realize what was really important. My life right now–it’s like you’re the constant. You’re the one thing that’s always been there. You’re the only thing I can always count on. And I have…I’ve always counted on you. I’ve always needed you and I know I’ve confused you. I know I’ve hurt you.”
“Phyllis. It’s ok. You don’t have to apologize for the way you feel.”
“That’s just it. I need to tell you how I feel. I told you that I loved you months ago and that was true, but it was different then. I loved you because I needed you to be there for me. I needed you to make my life better, to make my marriage better. Now I know that I need you–not for those reasons, but because I love you, because I don’t want to do this life without you, because we’re so alike that it’s scary, because you know me better than anyone, better than I know myself, because you make me laugh, because…
She felt his fingertips on her lips and she stopped.
He looked at her, a smile curving across his lips. “You really think you have to sell me on this?”
Phyllis smiled. “Well, in that case..” She wrapped her arms around his neck, her lips hovering just above his, “My memories are a little fuzzy,” she whispered, ” but last night I think we left off right about here.”