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Hahaha, okay, this is super old, so I had to clean it up a bunch because I want to post it before tonight's episode!








Kids, in order for me to tell you the story of how I met your mother, I have to back up and tell you the story of Aunt Robin and Uncle Barney.

**


"What the HELL?"

Robin froze mid-kiss, eyes flying open, and abruptly yanked back, speechless. She turned to see Marshall and Lily, who were both gawking stupidly. Then, without missing a beat, she reeled her hand back and slapped Barney across the face. Hard. Hard enough to send him spinning and staggering into the wall face-first. He promptly bounced off of it and crumpled to the floor.

"W-what the hell?" She tried to sound appalled, sneaking measured sideways glances at Marshall and Lily's shocked faces to see if it was working. "No, Barney, I will not make out with you! God!"

"WHAT THE HELL." Barney was half-sprawled on the toilet, red-faced and sputtering, and not at all amused. "Jesus, Scherbatsky, you have the arm of a Ukrainian discus thrower! Is there some kind of legally required daily allowance of spinach in the Canadian diet I'm unaware of?"

Robin ignored him and turned to Marshall and Lily. She caught a glimpse of herself in the mirror over Marshall's shoulder. Great. Her bra was definitely unhooked, her neck was scraped red with bite marks, her hair loose and messy around her shoulders.

"What are you two even doing in here?" she asked, flustered.

"Ted is upstairs with his date, so we came back here to have sex," said Lily bluntly, "but instead you were in our stall. This is our stall."

Barney scoffed, pulling himself up from the floor. "What, like it has your name on it?"

"Actually it does." Marshall pushed forward and pointed toward the corner of the stall door. "See?"

Indeed, the words LILY + MARSHALL'S LOVE MACHINE were scratched into the paint, surrounded by a heart. Barney and Robin "ohhh"ed in unison.

"Marshall did the heart," Lily explained, and Marshall ducked his head, smiling lovingly at her. She quickly straightened and narrowed her eyes at Robin. "You still haven't explained what the hell is going on!"

Robin was pretending to wipe at her mouth in disgust, trying to buy some time, when Lily’s eyes lit up with realization.

"Oh. My. God." She cupped a hand over her mouth in horror. "You two! You've been doing it! How long have you been doing it?"

"No! No, this is the first time!" Robin blurted out. A total lie. She elbowed Barney and shot him a meaningful glare. "Tell them it's the first time."

He drew himself to his full height, exhaled deeply and nodded.

"Robin's right. It is the first time." Barney paused, then added: "The first time in a public bathroom, anyway. We've totally been doing it for, like, months."

Robin gasped. "Barney!"

"Bathroom sex high five!" he crowed and raised one arm in the air. Everyone stared blankly. "No one gives it up for bathroom sex? Really? Here I thought we were all fans. Fine, then, be that way."

"So maybe it was a bad idea," conceded Robin.

Lily's eyes were wide saucers.

"A bad idea? A BAD IDEA?" Her hysterical screeching rose to pitches that Robin was certain only dogs could hear. It made her miss her own dogs. "In the history of bad ideas, this is one of the worst you could possibly have. It trumps the creation of acid wash jeans and whoever thought people would want to drink clear Pepsi! That is how bad this is!"

"Okay, okay, I get the picture!" Robin grabbed Lily's arms and gave her an entreating look. "Please, please do not tell Ted. He'll just freak out, and he shouldn't, because it's not a big deal. It isn't."

"Fine," she agreed. "I won't tell Ted. It's just-- you? And Barney? How-- how did this even happen?"

Robin sighed. "It was all Barney's idea."

**



SEVERAL MONTHS EARLIER

“Welcome back, Scherbatsky.”

They clinked glasses.

“Come on. We’re bro-ing out, rebound style. Suit up.” He set down his empty glass and sighed. “Nevermind, there’s no time for that.”

He was already standing and adjusting his suit. Robin blinked up at him impassively.

“I… am not… going… anywhere,” she replied, but her words came out delayed and bordering on slurred. “I don’t need a rebound. Gael was my rebound. A very, very good-looking rebound, as a matter of fact. Even if he kinda sucked in bed.”

Barney stared as she polished off what was remaining of her third—or was it fourth?— whiskey.

“Okay, I actually want to hear the rest of that story, but we need to get a move on.”

**

“Barney. No.”

“What, are you kidding? It’s like Brotopia. Karaoke bars are teeming with hot girls who are extremely liquored up and have little to no shame in singing Kelly Clarkson at the top of their lungs, deluding themselves with the idea that they are the next American Idol.”

The place was empty-- not unexpected, all things considered-- which meant they had a seat right up front. After finishing a beautiful version of Olivia Newton-John's "I Honestly Love You," the gorgeous Italian man with the microphone leaned down to hand it to Robin.

"You are beautiful," he said in his dreamy accent. "I am sure you have the voice of an angel."

Flattered, Robin hopped up on stage and decided to rock out to Alanis Morisette's "You Oughta Know." It was quite an impressive display, considering that despite her drunkenness, she still knew every word, and her voice was kickass, and her boobs looked great (as always). At the end, she did an astounding high kick and pumped both hands in the air, and the crowd cheered for an encore, not unlike her mall tour days-- even if back then her audiences consisted of tweens and bored parents rather than a bunch of twenty-to-thirtysomething drunks with nothing to do on a Monday night.

**

In the shared cab on the way to Brooklyn, Robin leaned her pounding head against the window and said, "I can't believe I just did that. It was bad, wasn't it? I butchered it."

Barney said, "Shut up. You did not butcher it. You were great."

She opened her eyes. "Really?" she said.

"You're always great, Scherbatsky," he said, and brushed the hair off her face fondly, and leaned in, and it was only natural that she opened her mouth to his when he pressed against her.





**

"OH MY GOD," Barney said. "THAT IS SO NOT HOW IT HAPPENED!"

"What?" Robin raised her eyebrows. "That is totally how it happened!"

"The court of public opinion is open to all sides of this debate," Marshall reasoned. "But dude, it better be good. Because seriously, I'm not buying a story where Robin comes onto you first."

"Look," Barney said, tugging at his already loose tie, "this is how it really happened."

**




SEVERAL MONTHS EARLIER

“Welcome back, Scherbatsky.”

They clinked glasses.

"You know, we should do something special to celebrate my newfound single status," said Robin a few minutes later, over the rim of her mostly empty glass. "Got any ideas?"

"There are the usual bro activities," Barney said. "Laser tag--"

"Fun, but I'm thinking something bigger."

"Like, licking the Liberty Bell big? 'Cause that one's hard to top."

"Maybe not that big."

**

Barney knew the owner of the karaoke club-- uh, because Barney knew everyone-- and scored them a table right at the front, despite the place being filled to capacity. That allowed them a prime position to heckle the obese Italian man singing a very effeminate version of Olivia Newton-John's "Physical," which led to the obese (and now irate) Italian shoving the mic in Robin's face and saying, "put up or shut up," which led to Robin wobbling up on the stage. She stood there for a full minute, unsure of song choice, before Barney went to the guy in charge of the tracks and told him to put on Alanis Morisette's "You Oughta Know."

It was quite an embarrassing display, with Robin slurring most of the words and giving the finger to the booing audience. There was a lot of headbanging involved, and at the end, she yelled, "I'M ROBIN SPARKLES, AND THAT WAS FOR YOU, TED MOSEBY. I WANT MY DOGS BACK," kicked over the mic stand (on the third try), and nearly got a concussion tripping over a cable on the way down the stairs.

**

In the shared cab on the way to Brooklyn, Robin crawled her way into Barney's lap and said, "I was amazing, wasn't I? God, that felt good! Being up there! Rocking OUT!" She kicked out one leg to emphasize "out." "I am like-- like the next Kelly Clarkson. Except edgy. And Canadian."

Barney rolled his eyes and said, "Yeah. Uh huh. You were great."

"Yeah I was!" she breathed, and licked her lips, and grabbed his face with both hands, and kissed him full on the mouth. With a ton of tongue.






**

"You are such a liar!" Robin said. "I gave a riveting performance and you know it!" She raised her hand like she was going to slap Barney again. He dived back to avoid her.

Lily intervened. "All right, all right! So you two have... very different versions of what happened that night. But what happened after that?"

"Yeah!" Marshall folded his arms over his chest. "I mean, one night-- okay, that's one thing. But MONTHS?"

Robin and Barney met each other's gazes guiltily.

**



OVER THE PAST SEVERAL MONTHS

Barney was smooth and lean, hard in all of the places Ted had been soft, but in a good way, a great way. It was like he was scratching an unbearable itch that had been lingering for months. Robin's back arched off the bed as her stomach pushed out, her breath hitched in her throat. She had a nice view of her newly-painted bedroom ceiling as her nails dug into the hollows of his shoulders. But she had other things on her mind than her paint job. Obviously.

Eventually they fell apart, both gasping for air, the sheets tangled around their legs.

“Wow,” she panted. Her vision was still sort of spinning. “That was…”

Barney twisted his head toward her. He was grinning widely. “I know.”

The words tickled across her collarbone, cool against the drying sweat. She shivered a little as he reached into his nightstand drawer and retrieved two cigars, handed one to her, lit them both with a single match.

“Fonseca Cosacos. Nice.” She inhaled, glanced over and saw Barney puffing away. “I think we just committed a severe violation of the Platinum Rule. Twice.”

He waved a hand airily. “Doesn’t count. You’re neither a neighbor nor a girl.”

“Excuse me?” she huffed, pushing herself up on one elbow. “Hello, I am too a girl! It’s not like I have a penis! You are witness to that!”

“While you may have the anatomical correctness of a female, in every other way you are pure bro,” he explained. “All of the hotness, none of the emotional crap. Man, Ted is the biggest idiot alive. You’re like the perfect woman.”

“Oh.” Robin wasn’t sure whether to be insulted or flattered by that. She decided to go with the latter. “Thanks.”

She settled back on her half of Barney’s pillow, smoking and listening to the traffic stirring outside.

“So, what does this make us?” she asked uncertainly. “Two friends who made a one-time drunken mistake which is never to be spoken of hereafter?”

“That. Or there’s the other option: we become BWBs.”

“BWBs?”

“Bros With Benefits.”

“And does that come with a set of rules too?”

“Not yet, seeing as it is currently uncharted territory to all of brokind,” he said. "But for this situation, I am willing to be the Christopher Columbus, the Ponce de León, the Magellan, the--"

"I think I got it, Barney."


**

"No, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, Barney and I are not together, no." Robin swallowed, hard. That would probably be more convincing if Barney wasn't squeezing her thigh under the table. She took a deep breath and added, "No."

"Really. Sixteen no's." Barney was grinning. Bastard. He was totally enjoying watching her squirm on the spot. "Really?"

**

There was a lot of sneaking around-- hands on thighs under the table. Staying late at McLlaren's to spend some one-on-one time. Shared cab rides.

And once, memorably, making out in Ted's bathroom when he went for a Pad Thai run.





**

"All this time?" Lily said, disbelieving. "That is-- that is just-- really, Robin?!" She shook her head. "You have to tell Ted."

"Or if you don't, it has to be, like, over, for good, you know?" Marshall said. "I mean, it's not serious, right?" He paused as Barney and Robin looked at each other awkwardly. "Right?"

Robin nodded after a long beat. "Right."

"Yeah," Barney said quietly. "Don't worry. It's... it's over."

**

It was raining when Robin left McLlaren's, and she didn't have an umbrella, but she figured she had a long subway ride to dry off, so it didn't matter. She didn't want to talk to Barney, or look at Barney-- she just wanted to go home. Take a bath. Smoke a cigar. Curl up in bed with her dogs-- except, wait, her dogs weren't there anymore. The thought of going home to an empty apartment stung, but what else was she going to do? Ride around on the subway for a few hours? Uh, last time she did that, that guy with no teeth tried to sell her his bottled urine. Ew. Maybe she'd just go home and polish her gun and call it a night.

"Hey. Hey, Robin. Come on."

It was Barney, catching her elbow. Robin spun around to face him.

She was not going to cry. She was not going to cry. Dammit.

"Barney, it's fine, okay? We both knew going into this--" She stopped to take a breath, suddenly couldn't look him in the eye as she gestured to both of them. "I mean, of course this was going to happen. We had a good run, and we can end it here, before Ted has to find out. It's not like we were ever going to--"

He cut her off with a kiss. His mouth was warm and wet, and she found herself opening to him, arms winding around his neck instinctively.

"Your suit," she said when she broke away, rubbing a hand along his drenched sleeve. "It's ruined."

"Bros above all else," he said solemnly.

“Even Hugo Boss?”

"Even Hugo Boss."

"So, what exactly happens now?" she asked.

Barney's brow wrinkled, and he gave her a "duh" look, as if the answer was obvious.

"Uh, we continue being awesome?"

She laughed and touched the side of his face.

"I'm sorry I sucker-slapped you," she said.

"Eh. Sometimes you take one for the team." He shrugged and pulled her in closer. "Plus, it was actually pretty hot."

She quirked an eyebrow. "Hmm, are you saying you like it rough?"

"That's my girl," he said, and kissed her again.

**




And so, kids, that's the story of how Aunt Robin and Uncle Barney got together-- as far as I know. Maybe there's more to it, but maybe it doesn't matter. The important thing is that it happened. Now, the story of how I found out about it, and the story of how they stayed together, is much longer and much more complicated, if you can believe it.

The thing is, in retrospect, that night is much more significant than it seems— you’ll find out that most things in life are. Because if Aunt Robin and Uncle Barney had never been caught right then, and if they had decided to end it there, I never would have ended up meeting your mother.

But we'll get to that soon enough.



--end



A/N: I suck at being funny, but I love B/R enough to try. Uh, any problems with canon are my fault (I am fanwanking that he told her about the Platinum Rule before the episode of the same name). Shoutout to [livejournal.com profile] winter_baby for her ~amazing picspams that nearly convinced me that they are TOTALLY DOING IT already! Title from Alanis Morisette, of course!!

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