DISCLAIMER: These characters belong to Fannie Flag and whoever it was that created/owns the movie, but whoever it is, is definitely not me. No copyright infringement is intended.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.

In The Still Night Air
By Jaina


"Idgie, what are you doing?" Ruth Jamison asked in exasperation, as she tugged her long sun dress up a little bit higher and followed after Idgie. Not that she had much of a choice. Idgie had taken her hand and refused to let go, as she pulled her into her beaten up truck and driven her out into the woods. Not that Ruth was exactly protesting.

Buddy Jr. was just fine under Sipsy's more than capable care and honestly Ruth was more curious than upset. After all, it wasn't as if she hadn't known exactly who Idgie Threadgood was when she had gone into business with her. Now Idgie was pulling her through the woods on what looked to be a deer path - an overgrown ill used deer path at that. Thorns and brambles crowded the path and Ruth had to watch her step carefully to keep from getting her dress caught. It was easier to focus on that because despite her fast pace - more like a full tilt scramble - Idgie was carefully making sure that not one flimsy branch or strangling vine came back to slap Ruth in the face.

The night air was impossibly still, not broken by a breath of air. The oppressive heat of the day hadn't been broken by the fall of darkness, and sweat ran in rivulets down Ruth's back. Her palm was slick in Idgie's hand as she struggled forward, breathing hard in the thick air. Her other hand came up to her chest, fluttering over her heart, as she straightened to catch her breath. She had only made a few stumbling steps before Idgie stopped and looked back at her with concern written plainly on her face.

She stopped abruptly as she saw Ruth struggling to catch her breath. Idgie's lips pursed in irritation.

"Why didn't you tell me you couldn't breathe, darn it?"

Even in her state, Ruth appreciated Idgie's rare attempt at cleaning up her language. Reverend Sproggins would have had a heart attack from shock, if he had heard it.

"Because I couldn't breathe, silly," Ruth said between breaths.

All around them a chorus of crickets sprang up loudly. Their plaintive chirps filled the air, driving out any other sounds. Ruth felt surrounded by a cocoon of noise. Idgie's hand squeezed hers and Ruth smiled automatically as she looked up at Idgie.

"I'm fine," she said calmly, knowing despite Idgie's silence that she was worried. Her grin grew broader. "But don't think I've forgotten that you still haven't told me where you're taking me, Idgie Threadgood."

"'Course not," Idgie said, her free hand plucking at a bramble beside them. She put something to Ruth's lips and she opened her mouth immediately. She bit down and the tart taste of a wild raspberry burst onto her tongue. "But you're just gonna have to wait until we get there to find out, 'cause I'm not tellin'."

It wasn't as if Ruth had expected anything else. She had known how stubborn Idgie could be for a long time, and she was content to let Idgie have her surprise. If she had truly wanted to know she would have let her own stubborn side show. Idgie would give her anything she asked for, no matter what it took, if Ruth would only ask for it. It was why Ruth didn't truly ask for much.

"It's only a little farther now," Idgie coaxed. "We'll go slower."

"Let's go then," Ruth replied, feeling revived by Idgie's tart berry offering. She wasn't surprised when Idgie continued to plow through the woods with her previous determination and speed. She had expected nothing less, and it was at least an excuse to keep clinging to Idgie's hand. Not that an excuse was really necessary.

The trees and underbrush cleared from one step to the next. In the distance, there was the sound of running water, tumbling down of rocks and splashing through vegetation.

Idgie's whoop filled the air, as she ran straight toward the water. Ruth's hand slid from Idgie's, as she stayed rooted to the spot. Water splashed up from the small pond as Idgie plunged in feet first. Ruth laughed in dismay as she watched Idgie surface.

Water streamed down Idgie's face, and her clothes stuck tightly to her body.

"Come in," Idgie called from the center of the pond.

Ruth bit her lip, and shook her head.

Giving her head a toss that sent water droplets spraying everywhere, Idgie climbed back out of the water and over to where Ruth was standing. She took Ruth's hand between two of hers and turned it over. The roughness of Idgie's fingers against her skin made Ruth shiver.

"Please?" Idgie said softly.

Ruth sighed. "I'll get my clothes wet."

Idgie grinned. "Then take them off."

Ruth laughed helplessly. "Is that your great plan, Idgie Threadgood? Get me out in the woods and undressed."

Idgie shrugged. "You were the one worried about getting them wet."

"One of us has to worry," Ruth said simply, as she began undoing the buttons of her dress. Idgie began helping her. When they were done, Ruth let the dress fall. Her arms crossed over her chest; she felt all too bare, even if Idgie was the only one there.

Idgie reclaimed her hand, and more slowly led her into the water. The mud squelched between Ruth's toes. The water was tepid and lukewarm as it rose up around her, until it was almost up to her chest, and then leveled out.

Idgie was grinning at her wildly. Walking backwards, she led Ruth gently forwards. The sound of rushing water grew louder, but Ruth couldn't look away from Idgie. Droplets of cool water splashed against her bare shoulders and her face, and seeped down her body. Startled, Ruth glanced behind Idgie, and saw the water trickling down from the rocks above them.

It was a waterfall, she supposed, but a small one. It was probably bigger when there was more rain, but now, in the middle of summer it was reduced to a fairly pitiful trickle. Still it was a cool trickle, and that made all the difference. That made it wonderful.

Gently she lifted her arms, and laid them around Idgie's neck. Idgie's hands slid down her bare arms, and followed the line of her body until they found the curve of her waist. Ruth couldn't help but smile. It was such an Idgie thing for her to do something like this just because. Her husband would never have considered it. Fortunately, she didn't have to deal with him any more.

She pressed closer to Idgie, until nothing was separating them. The warmth radiating out from her actually felt good in the slight chill of the water coming down off the rocks.

"Idgie Threadgood," she murmured. "Whatever am I going to do with you?"

"Kiss me." The straight forward way that Idgie said it made her let out a snort of laughter.

"Oh, Idgie," Ruth said softly, playing with ends of Idgie's wild hair.

She brushed the corner of Idgie's lips with her own. She felt Idgie shiver and wondered if it was from the cold. Idgie's lips moved tentatively against her own.

Idgie always treated her as if she were fragile. Part of her appreciated the way that Idgie touched her so carefully, but another part of her didn't want that hesitancy. She wanted to lose herself in Idgie's sweet kisses and the touch of her hand. Skin against skin.

In the end, Idgie didn't disappoint her. She never did.

The End

Return to Miscellaneous Fiction

Return to Main Page