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Matt/Aiden Smart

Four Times Jenny Cardle Didn’t Interfere and One Time She Did, X-Factor Fic, RPS, Matt/Aiden

Title: Four Times Jenny Cardle Didn’t Interfere and One Time She Did
Word Count: 3,337
Rating: PG I think
Disclaimer: Not Mine - real people, in fact. And this almost certainly probably definately didn't happen.
Summary: We all know Joanna ships them, so I wanted to get Matt's mum in on the action, so to speak! Does exactly what it says on the tin.
Author's Note: The first two are a bit meh, but please bear with me! Mostly, I am finding the marriage meme eating my brain and am getting sucked in with something I'm writing from that and wanted to get this posted. Hope it is alright!

Four Times Jenny Cardle Didn’t Interfere and One Time She Did
by northern_rain

When Matt comes back from Australia

When Matt comes back from Australia he is happy, but quiet, and Jenny feels like her son has changed.

A few days later they are alone in the house and he comes and watches her clean the kitchen after breakfast. Wrapping his hands around a cup of tea he speaks quietly. “I broke up with Lauren.” Jenny just looks at him, because she’s heard this before. “For real this time Mum. It’s over.”
“Why? They didn’t tell you to, did they?”
“Mum!” His indignation is real, and that comes as something of a relief, because she doesn’t want her son to change.

“I cheated on her,” Matt admits quietly. “Not recently or anything,” he adds, and she is glad, because she’d understood that Dannii Minogue was the only woman he’d been spending time with recently, and frankly she is out of Matt’s league. “Just generally, whenever I felt like it. And that’s not love is it?”
“No,” Jenny agreed. She’d never liked Lauren, had certainly never felt that her and Matt fitted together. Matt never smiled very much with Lauren, not the way David will smile at her, that casual happiness that comes with just simply being together.

“I think I’d like to be a better person,” Matt says, getting up and kissing her on the cheek. It’s clear that the conversation is over, so she smiles and holds out a tea towel.

“How about being a person that dries up,” she offers, and he takes the hint, drying up the dishes.

A few days later Jenny happens to turn around as Matt’s phone rings, and happens to see the look on his face as he answers it.

“Grimshaw,” he shouts at the phone, lying back on the sofa and beaming as he talks.

An hour later and Matt is still on the phone. Jenny has a long list of questions she wants to ask, starting with who is he and when are you bringing him home, but she knows her son well enough to know that he needs to be allowed to bring it up in his own time.

When dropping Matt off at the finalists home

The house is massive, that’s Jenny’s first thought. That she hopes someone is being paid to clean it is her second thought, because she knows her son certainly won’t be pitching in – she isn’t entirely sure Matt even knows how to turn her hoover on.

Matt is looking around him like he can’t quite believe it is real, and she feels like she should be saying something reassuring but is spared the necessity when a tall blur comes rushing over, throwing himself at her son.

“Aiden,” Matt’s voice is slightly muffled in a fairly hideous cardigan, and she realises that this is the man (boy) her son has been spending so much time chatting to.

“Me,” the boy grins, pulling away and turning to introduce himself to Jenny. He’s got a wide smile and talks too fast, gesticulating and bouncing in a way that suggests he will be bounding off in another moment, too excited to simply stay here. Matt is staring at Aiden as he talks, dazed but grinning, and the look on his face tells her everything she needs to know.

Aiden takes a moment to introduce Matt to his mum before leaving the two mothers standing in the hall while he drags Matt off around the house, Matt following happily behind him.

Jenny looks across at Joanna, wondering if she should say something, wondering if perhaps she should apologise for Matt’s infatuation with her son.

“How old is he?” Joanna asks.
“Aiden’s 18, nearly 19.”
“Oh right.”
“Sod this,” Joanna grins, turning to face Jenny. “My son is head over heels in love with your son, not that he’s noticed it yet. Is Matt going to break his heart?”
“From that little display, I don’t think Matt would be capable of making Aiden look sad, never mind breaking his heart.”

When it comes to saying goodbye she longs to say something about Aiden, and about not letting what is about to happen get in the way of something that could be far more important. She also has an urge to ask Aiden to look after Matt, or visa versa, but she suspects that will happen anyway. In the end she swallows down her questions and her advice and just wishes him luck – she’s vague about what with.

When Aiden is eliminated

Jenny is so relieved that Matt is through that she doesn’t entirely register that Aiden is in danger until Dermot is asking him what he’s planning to sing.

Matt is staring at the TV like he can’t entirely process what is happening, and the One Direction boys are arranged around him like bodyguards.

Aiden sings, and he’s good, and she can see the relief on Matt’s face.

Katie sings, and clearly throws in the towel halfway through, and Matt is smiling, like his world has righted itself and everything has fallen back into place.

Then it goes to deadlock, and Aiden is out, and Matt looks like he doesn’t understand anything anymore. The One Direction boys herd him out onto the stage for the Xtra Factor and Jenny watches as he heads straight for Aiden the moment Konnie finishes with him, the two of them occupying their own corner of the stage.

Aiden is being so strong, so brave about the whole thing, and she wants to point that out to Matt, to show him what an amazing man he has.

Konnie and the others keep their distance, because they know that the boys need this time, and she wants to point this out to Matt, to ask how they are the only two not noticing what is so clear to everyone else.

When Aiden is taken off for his interview Matt doesn’t follow. He sidles up to her, taking her hand and tugging on it like he did when he was little. He leads though the backstage warren, slipping into Dannii’s dressing room and when they sit on the sofa, he puts his head in her lap and cries.

It’s desperate and messy and heartbreaking, and she has absolutely no idea what to say, and in the end just sits there, stroking his head and muttering soothing words.

The storm soon subsides, but he is still shaking, still sniffing and still incapable of talking.

He pulls himself together after about twenty minutes, when his phone beeps. He fumbles for it without making much of an effort to sit up, and she can see the screen clearly. Where r u. ‘m finished – back 2 house?

Within an instant he is upright, drying his face and blowing his nose. He texts Aiden back, and the dressing room door is opening before she even realises what’s going on. Dannii gives Matt a big hug and the two of them watch as a suddenly together Matt walks off with one arm flung around Aiden’s shoulder, talking about how they’re going to get completely off their face and throw things at Katie.

“They’re being strong for each other, aren’t they,” Jenny comments, and Dannii nods sadly. “Idiots.” Because really, this is the perfect moment for them to seek comfort in each other, and maybe as Matt’s mum she shouldn’t be thinking it, but to hell with it because she wants to see her so settle down.

Beatles week

Jenny was watching the show backstage with the other contestants – Matt would never in a million years have asked her to stay with him, but she knew her boy, knew that this week, the first without Aiden, would be difficult.

She was keeping in the background, watching his reaction to the show, and to the other contestants as they came off stage, when she noticed Rebecca’s daughter running into the room. It took her a minute or two to realise what was going on as the little girl came to an abrupt halt, wide eyes searching the room, lip wobbling as she realised she couldn’t see who she was looking for. She was about to step forward and offer to take the girl to her mother when she noticed Lillie May heading towards her son.

“Where’s Aiden?” the girl half whispered, fingers in her mouth as she stared up at Matt.

“He’s not here darling,” when Lillie’s face crumpled in confusion she could see the sympathy and fellow feeling in Matt’s face.

“Where is he?”
“At home?”

In the background she caught sight of the One Direction boys grinning at each other and she wondered exactly how many versions of Matt’s ‘I hate them all for ditching Aiden’ speech the boys had heard – clearly they were wondering if he was about to launch into another one for Lille’s benefit. As such, she considered it fortunate that a partially made up Rebecca swept in at this point, fielding the question herself.

“He was voted off darling,” Rebecca smiled, stroking her daughters head as she looked up at her mother. “Remember?”

That Lillie hadn’t made the connection between Aiden being voted off and her playmate disappearing was evident as the girl took one disappointed look at her mother and burst into tears, sobbing “I want Aiden” into Rebecca’s shoulder.

One arm around her daughter, Rebecca took out her phone and called Aiden to no avail. “No answer,” she mouthed over Lillie May’s head, gesturing to Matt and the One Direction boys “you try.”

When both Matt and the boy from One Direction failed to get through, Rebecca called Aiden again, half whispering into the phone so Lillie wouldn’t hear:

“Aiden Grimshaw if you don’t answer your phone I won’t be responsible for my actions.”

As Rebecca hung up, Jenny decided to make the one call none of the others had thought to make, dialling Joanna’s number.

“Joanna, it’s Jenny, is Aiden there?”
“He’s watching the show.”
“And not answering his phone – Rebecca’s daughter is breaking her heart over his absence, can you get him?”

As Joanna went to rouse her son, Jenny knelt down next to Lillie, who was still sniffling in her mother’s arms.

“Lillie,” the girl looked up, “there’s someone on the phone for you.”

Rebecca gave her a grateful look as her daughter took the phone.

“Lily-pad,” Jenny could hear Aiden’s voice coming through the phone, and Lillie’s joyful “Aiden!” was enough to let the others know what was going on.

Soon the girl was giggling into the phone and promising god knows what to Aiden, before hanging up and politely giving the phone back to Jenny, the sad specimen of a few minutes ago completely gone.

“No one rushes to the phone when I miss Aiden,” Matt grouched while Lillie was still talking to Aiden, and it took all Jenny’s willpower not to respond, but fortunately the boy from One Direction had no such problem, grinning and saying, “well frankly if we called him every time you pitched a fit about missing him, poor old Aidey would never get off the phone.”
“And,” the pretty, curly haired member chimed in, “your sulks shouldn’t be rewarded with Aiden time – it will set a bad trend.”

Matt laughed good naturedly, before pushing both boys off the back of the sofa. Any retaliation was abandoned though when Lillie came up to Matt and put her arms up. He lifted her onto his lap and Jenny melted as the small arms came up to wrap around her son. “From Aiden,” Lillie said, which had most of those in the room ah-ing, “he says you were great.”

Matt didn’t say anything, but Jenny thought his eyes looked suspiciously wet as he hugged the little girl.

As a harried make-up girl came to collect Rebecca, and a smiling Lillie went with her, Jenny heard her whisper excitedly to her mother, “Aiden told me a secret – it’s going to be a surprise...”

The next night, Aiden was back in the green room watching the show with all the other eliminated finalists. The remaining finalists had all been there when he arrived, supposedly to greet the returnees, but, Jenny suspected, really just to watch Matt’s face explode with happiness and she wondered again how those two boys couldn’t see what everyone else around them saw so clearly.

The wait for the result was less nerve wrecking than usual as she watched Aiden play with Lillie, the two of them booing enthusiastically every time Katie or Simon came on the screen, and cheering every time Matt, Dannii or Rebecca showed up.

As the results came in, Lillie held Aiden’s hand until Matt’s name was called, laughing happily as Aiden cheered and danced around the room.

After the final, when Matt is finally home

Matt sleeps for what seems like an eternity when he is finally allowed home and rather than hover around waiting for him to wake up, Jenny decides to watch the final, because frankly Sunday night is a bit of a blur.

Matt comes downstairs as the show is ending, rubbing his eyes and looking young and confused.

“Just watching you win love,” she smiles, “you thumped Dannii.”
“I know, I feel terrible.”

Jenny rewinds the last few minutes of the show and pulls Matt down onto the sofa with her. He looks confused but obeys, watching his final performance of his winning song (as his mother she will admit it was terrible).

As Aiden runs onto the stage and the two of them sing together she watches Matt watching them, watches the smile that flits across his face at the two of them, and she knows he doesn’t see the others, doesn’t see himself clobbering Dannii, doesn’t see anything except him and Aiden.

“Matt,” she smoothes his hair back from his face when the show is over, and he turns to look at her. “I love you and promised myself I wouldn’t interfere but I just want to check, you do know you are in love with him right?”

She isn’t sure what kind of reaction she is expecting, but when Matt just kisses her and smiles saying, “of course I do,” she kind of wants to strangle him.


On New Years Day Matt comes home looking tired but happy, and Jenny barely waits for him to come in through the door before she asks the all important question, “so, did you kiss him?”
“No, mum, I told you...”
“For godssake Matthew,” Jenny doesn’t even try to hide the exasperation in her voice. “You’ve been all he’s talked about for weeks, you spend hours on the phone to him, he’s the only reason you had any presents to give out at Christmas and he drove hundreds of miles to spend New Years Eve with you. I know you are worried about your friendship, but do you really think anything you could say will ruin it?”

Matt just shrugs and looks at the floor.

(The present thing is entirely true – Aiden had phoned Matt early one morning, saying he was in town and as much as he loved Matt’s single it seemed a tad egotistical for Matt to give everyone copies of himself for Christmas so he was going to step in and save Matt from himself by shopping for him. Matt had happily spent the better part of half a day on the phone listening to Aiden shop and making plans for meeting up, and he’d managed to sneak away to meet Aiden after one of his gigs so he could collect the presents. Aiden had drawn then line at wrapping them for him though.)

“He’s flown off for another gig hasn’t he,” Jenny continues, and Matt nods, “well I can’t very well kick you out until you do something to resolve this, but next time he’s within a reasonable driving distance...” she trails off, clearly finally submitting to the pathetic look on her son’s face.


When Aiden came down to see Matt there must have been something in her face that told her son to beware, because he was out of the door before she’d even gotten out of bed.

That evening she’d been in the lounge when the front door slammed, and when no Matt appeared she quietly opened the door a crack, shameless listening to the conversation.

“...you know, I was kind of nervous,” Aiden was saying, twisting his scarf around his fingers, “I was worried it wouldn’t be like it was before, that things would be weird now. I mean, I was more worried at New Year, but still, on the train...” he trailed off at the incredulous look on Matt’s face, “I know, I’m a moron.”
“Yeah, you are.”
“Well in the spirit of that,” Aiden took a step back. “There’s something I’ve been meaning to say, and I kind of want to say it and have it out there and then pretend like I didn’t just kill this...” Matt stared at Aiden like he was talking in another language, and Aiden seemed to realise that he wasn’t making himself clear because he took a deep breath before stepping forward and planting a quick kiss on Matt’s lips. “That, I just wanted to say that, really.”
“You said it wrong,” Matt stepped forward, wrapping one hand around Aiden’s waist, the other at the back of his neck, tilting his face down to kiss him properly.

When they finally broke apart, a gasping Aiden slumped against the front door, “I think you broke my brain,” he giggled, “they’ll never let me on the train like this, I don’t think my legs work anymore.”
“You don’t actually think I’m letting you leave after that.”
“I can’t stay.”
“Yes you can, can’t he mum,” Matt turns slightly towards the lounge door as he says that and Jenny knows she’s been busted. She calls her agreement through the door, before closing it and stepping away. She doesn’t need to know any more, she tells herself firmly.

(Had she stayed, she would have heard:

“Where will I sleep?”
“With me.”
“We’ve only just kissed, I’m not quite that easy Mr Cardle, no matter how lovely you are,” Aiden’s voice is teasing, but his face is earnest.
“It will hardly be the first time we’ve slept together.”
“This would be different though,” Matt raises an eyebrow and Aiden ducks his head, “ok then, this will be exactly the same, but without either of us denying how much we like sharing a bed.”

Matt grins and kisses him again.

“Just sleeping though,” Aiden insists and at Matt’s look he adds, “you live with your parents Matt!”
“I’ll move out.”
“A little hasty, and the letting agents are probably closed.”
“Tomorrow then.”
“I think I’ll hold out for a date,” Aiden grins, “a real one, not one where you spend half the night on the phone and I sit there making sad faces at my beer and wondering why you even asked me out.”
“My poor baby,” Matt flippantly replies, before noticing the catch in Aiden’s breath, “Baby,” he repeats curiously, then “Mine,” and there’s a slight growl in his voice, and either that or the possessive claim has Aiden flushing before jumping him.

“Still not that easy,” he pulls away eventually, mouth swollen, face showing more than a little stubble burn.

“Oh god, you’re going to kill me,” Matt grins, “you’re not going to make me wait until I make an honest man out of you are you?”
“Well I have been prepared to marry you since about week one,” Aiden grins, “it’s really not my fault you’re super slow.”
“Marry me then,” Matt asks, planting kisses on Aiden’s neck, causing him to giggle. “Marry me.”
“Ok,” Aiden grins, like he’s calling Matt’s bluff.
“I’m not joking, Aiden, marry me.”
“Ok,” Aiden says again. “But you know, lets give us like six months or something first. And I expect a proper proposal.”


omfg this was perfect
Thanks :)
I'm on the verge of falling asleep but I had to just say that this is completely adorable and I'm smiling so widely right now. I love all the little moments, and Rebecca's daughter, and the ending :D Just wonderful! ♥
Aw, thanks :)

The Rebecca's daughter thing was pretty much the basis for the whole fic, so glad you liked it.
Aw, thanks :)
So adorable! I loved how you did Jenny, fics from different perspectives are awesome. Really nice fic :D
Thanks :)

I like fics from a different POV - plus they come easier for some reason!
guh...loved this SO much!
Thanks :)

Oh, icon love!
This is all kinds of perfect and I am in love with it ♥___♥

Thanks :)
oh it was lovely to see things from a different perspective. matt crying all over his mum after aiden left completely made me melt.

and when they moved into the house and their mums could already see they were in love... just too cute. and the ending was perfect.

yes yes yes.
Aw, thanks, too kind :)
This is my new favourite Maiden fic. ♥
Aw, thanks :)
So damn cute! Loved it.
Thanks :)
he took a deep breath before stepping forward and planting a quick kiss on Matt’s lips. “That, I just wanted to say that, really.”
“You said it wrong,” Matt stepped forward, wrapping one hand around Aiden’s waist, the other at the back of his neck, tilting his face down to kiss him properly.

Oh I feel that one exchange was just wrapped up in glittery paper and tied with an enormous bow just for me to open and coo over today! [Erm, sorry, it's my birthday and so far nothing has beaten this, but the day is young. Unlike me! LOL]

So so cute, and I just love Mummy Cardle in this. Nice to see her getting the chance to shine in a fic.
Thanks, and happy birthday :)
I'm sooo loving this :)!! Perfect
Thanks :)
Aww I love a fic involving Jenny... Normally all the fics involve only Joannna
Thanks, I hoped it would be an interesting pov :)
Usual Suspects

October 2011

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