If Only Tonight

Into The Storm: Chapter Seventeen - Close To You

Into The Storm

Chapter Seventeen: Close To You

"You can't stay mad at me the entire trip!"

Mia looked at Matthew, scornfully.

"Yes I can!"

"No you can't! I didn't know you had some plan to visit your family." He argued.

"That's because you never asked! You never bother to talk to me!"

Why does he bother now? Mia thought with irritation. Since they had gotten on the plane, Matthew had been trying to get her to stop giving him the silent treatment. He never talks to me anyway, why does he care now? It's not like not talking to him would make any difference! Mia looked out of the window. She didn't know how she had gotten herself into this argument in the first place. Who had been the first one to speak?

"I'm trying to talk to you now!"

"A little late, don't you think?"

"How was I supposed to know being friends with my doctor was in the fine print of my contract!" Matthew shot back.

"Yea? Well, I didn't know going to your national games was a part of my contract, either." She sniped in a low voice.

"Well think of the bright side at least you get to travel. Think of it as a vacation." Matthew hissed.

"I would be on vacation, at home, if it weren't for you!" She said through gritted teeth.

"It's not my fault!" Matthew repeated the age old adage.

"Of course not! It's never your fault!"

Mia watched as Matthew sighed and looked towards the other end of the plane cabin, taking in the other passengers. They probably thought the two of them were having some sort of lover's spat. Mia shuddered at the thought. Nathaniel had left a day earlier, leaving Matthew and Mia alone to bicker. I wish I had gone with him, Mia thought with dismay. Instead here she was stuck with Matthew.

"Why do you care? It shouldn't matter to you whether or not I'm mad at you. We're not friends, remember?" Mia needled him.

Watching as Matthew opened his mouth to say something but then closed it, Mia turned away to look out the window once more.

"Just because I said we're not friends, doesn't mean we're enemies." She heard Mathew speak quietly.

"What's your point?" Mia asked, glaring at him.

"Never mind..." Matthew muttered.

"I thought so..." Mia mumbled under her breath.

They sat in silence. Mia decided to watch a movie, turning on the television, Mia flipped through the channels. Before she could put on her earphones, Matthew spoke.

"You can't stay mad at me the entire time."

Mia sent him another glare.

"Just watch me." She told him, as she put the earphones on, turning away from him.

"You're not winning any points for carrying my bag against my will."

"I can try." Matthew told Mia as they walked into the hotel where the Italian squad was staying. She's a stubborn one, Matthew thought with amusement that was mingled with annoyance. He had never spoken to her as much as he had in the last several hours. She had been sullen when they had left the apartment, looking woefully towards Oliver, once in the car Matthew had thought to talk to her...he hadn't known she was still angry at him. Choosing to give him the silent treatment, it had taken some poking from Matthew that had started the argument.

Although Mia was still unhappy with him, Matthew had seen the way she had looked outside the window of their cab. She was enticed by what she saw. Matthew knew she was itching to explore the city. Even the tone of her disapproval had softened. She wouldn't be staying mad him for long, if he had his way. He was seriously reconsidering his stupid claim of them not being friends.

Matthew led the way to the reception counter. The uniformed man looked over at him and smiled.

"Hello sir, do you have a booking?"

"Yes. Under the name Matthew Rossi." Matthew told him. Looking behind him, Matthew saw Mia looking up at the immaculately molded ceiling.

"Ah! Here it is. Rossi, one room. Here's the key, sir." The receptionist handed Matthew the card to open his room. Matthew took it and placed it the front pocket of his jacket. For a split second, Matthew didn't realize why Mia was looking at him questioningly, with that Matthew snapped back to reality.

"Wait! I booked two rooms." Matthew told the receptionist.

"Sorry sir, there is only one room booked under Rossi."

"What's going on? I thought you booked two separate rooms?" Mia had come over, having clearly heard the man behind the counter.

Shit! Matthew cursed silently.

"Apparently there's only one room booked under my name." Matthew told her, suddenly wishing she was still giving him the silent treatment.

"What? No! There must be some mistake." Mia exclaimed. Matthew watched as Mia rounded on the receptionist.

"There were two rooms booked under Rossi. Can you please check again?"

"Sorry madam, but there is only one room booked under Rossi."

"Are you sure you booked two rooms, Matt?" Matthew saw Mia looking at him, her eyes narrowed with suspicion.

"I swear I booked two rooms." Matthew told her. "I even got the confirmation email. It said two rooms."

Seeming satisfied, he watched as she turned to the man.

"Can't we book another room?"

"Sorry madam, there are no more rooms available. They have been reserved for members of the Italian football squad."

Mia turned to face Matthew. He could read the look on her face. Fix this mess! That's what it was telling him.

"We are a part of the squad. Well I am...and she's with me. Do you think there is another room left?"

"Sorry sir, there are no more rooms. I'm sure you and the missus will be well taken care of in your room." The receptionist said, looking at the both of them with a knowing smile.

"N-n-no! We're not married!" Mia corrected him quickly.

Matthew didn't know why, but a part of him hurt as she said this. It sounded as though even the thought of being with him was revolting to her...then again I haven't exactly been someone she would want to be with, Matthew thought with remorse.

"My apologies."

"It's okay. Anyway I'm sure we'll figure out what to do with the room. Come on, Mia." Matthew said, picking up the bags and heading for the elevator with Mia in tow.

"I hope you will find your stay enjoyable." The receptionist called out after them.

"Not likely..." Matthew heard Mia mutter under her breath.

Something in Matthew broke as he heard this. I will try to make sure she enjoys this trip, Matthew thought with determination. Now all he had to do was prove it to her...

"Take the card and swipe it."

Mia, who had been trudging along behind Matthew, looked up at Matthew. He was holding both their bags, there was no card in his hand, and Mia gave him a questioning look.

"No one asked you to carry all that." She told him, grimly.

"Please? It's in my jacket. The front pocket." Ignoring her jibe completely, he motioned to the pocket with his head.

"Fine..." Mia sighed, as she walked up to him.

She stood face to face with Matthew; she could feel her heart speed up, all the while ignoring the look in his blue eyes as she reached to get the card. No sooner had she touched him, there was a jolt. Mia quickly got the card and turned away. Collecting her thoughts, Mia swiped the card through the card reader. A beep sounded, telling her the door had unlocked.

Pushing all thoughts about Matthew to the back of her mind, Mia walked in to the room ahead of Matthew. Flicking on the lights, she was pleasantly surprised.

A large bed sat in the middle of the room with night tables on either side. There were lamps on each night table with floral lamp shades. A miniature fridge was in another corner, while across form it was a small breakfast table with elegant chairs. The television was perched atop of a chest of drawers, and in the last corner of the room was the door joining the bathroom.

Without giving Matthew a chance to put the bags down, Mia ran for the bed.

"I call the bed! Starfish!" She said, not caring how childish she sounded. She spread her arms and legs, making herself the starfish.

"You can't have the entire bed! What about me?" Matthew complained as he came over to her, having put the bags on the table.

"What about you?" Mia retorted, sticking her tongue out at him.

It was his fault she had gotten stuck coming with him, and she suspected him for the room booking mistake. Although it didn't make sense. He was the one who said they weren't friends, and yet here they were, stuck together. In fact, this was the most he had spoken to her in the entire time she had been living with him.

Strange, Mia thought.

Still she didn't move from the bed. It was hers for all she cared. Matthew was visibly fuming at her. Mia bit back any insults that came to mind. He was getting his just desserts.

"Mia-" Matthew had started to say something in a low threatening tone, when they both heard a knock on the door.

She heard him sigh, as he walked over to the door. Mia got up into a sitting position.

"Hey Matt! Mia! It's about time you both got here!"

Nathaniel stepped in from the hallway. He looked happy to see them.

"Nice room! So who gets the bed?" Nathaniel observantly, grinning at them.

"I do!" "We're sharing!" Mia and Matthew spoke at the same time.

"No we're not!" Mia argued.

"Where am I going to sleep?" Matthew asked, he sounded annoyed with her.

Mia gave him her sweetest smile.

"There." She told him, pointing to the floor. Nathaniel laughed at them, as he sat down in one of the chairs.

"That's ridiculous. I'm not sleeping on the ground."

"You could always share with Nate." Mia shrugged, looking over at Nathaniel. Matthew turned to face Nathaniel.

"Sorry, Matt. I can't help you out. I'm stuck sharing with Leo." Nathaniel said holding up his hands, all the while failing to look apologetic. Matthew glared daggers at her. Mia held her own, glaring back.

"I should let you both unpack, so I'm going to go now. Have fun you two! Good night!" Nathaniel said snickering, as he got up and hurried to the door.

"See you both tomorrow. Alive, I hope." He chuckled before closing the door behind him.

"I'm not sleeping on the ground, Mia." Matthew said to her, as the lock clicked. Mia looked up, to see him standing in front of the bed, with his hands on his hips. Knowing she was going to have to forfeit this one, Mia sighed.

"Alright, fine...you can have that side of the bed. Just get another blanket or something." Mia said, pointing to the left side of the bed.

Sleeping next to Matthew wasn't something new. Hadn't she jumped in to his bed all those nights when there were thunderstorms? The only new thing was that they both were well aware of it, and this time they were stuck together for a week.

"Thank you..." She heard Matthew mutter, as she got off the bed and took off her coat. Mia turned to face him.

"You're welcome."

The first night in the hotel had passed without incident. Although Matthew hadn't gotten another blanket, Mia hadn't complained; Matthew was thankful for that. They had slept with each one facing a night table. What Mia didn't know was that once Matthew had been convinced she was fast asleep, he turned around to watch her. Not like that'll ever come up, Matthew told himself, just the sound of it is creepy...Mia, did you know I was watching you sleep...she'd probably set Oliver on me! He suppressed a shudder.

There was just one other thing he wouldn't be telling her anytime soon. She had been right to suspect him the other night. Matthew had in fact booked only one room. He was lucky she had believed that the hotel had made a mistake. He hadn't done it just to annoy her, that had never been his primary reason. He had just wanted to keep her close. There was no Oliver here to tell her to be careful. It was up to him to make sure nothing happened to her. Nevertheless, there was a part of him that wanted to get to know her, and he hoped to make the most of this opportunity. He glanced over at her. Mia was busy looking out of the window at stores that they were passing by. Now he seriously doubted it...

Matthew had woken Mia up early, he had to get to the car rental place and then he had practice. Mia didn't understand why she had to come along.

"You're supposed to know if we get injured." Matthew recalled telling her.

Her response had been brilliant.

"Don't worry; I'll know when I see you limping in the door."

"You're not about to make this easy, are you?" He had asked her weakly.

"Nope. I'm still angry with you." She had told him with a smug grin.

Lucky for him it wasn't long before Mia had gotten ready since Nathaniel had promised her they would take a look around the city after practice.

Matthew parked the car in the lot next to the stadium. As they walked to the stadium, he could tell something was on her mind. There was more to the trip she had been about to take home. For one thing, she had seemed somewhat relieved but at the same time she had looked disappointed. He had never seen anyone relieved not to be going home, anyone other than himself that is.

Who would willingly go home to my mother? Matthew thought dully. The thought of facing his mother was enough to make him grateful he was spending time with Mia instead. She didn't look like someone who would fight with her family. He put the thoughts away as they entered the stadium.

Turning to Mia, Matthew handed her some things; a small blanket to keep her warm, some drinks, and snacks to pass the time with. She looked puzzled when he handed her an extra pair of shoes.

"I'm not playing keeper." She told him, quickly.

Matthew stifled a laugh. She still remembered playing on the field with him.

"Those are for me. Sometimes the other guys like to pull pranks and I'm not about to go barefoot around here in the winter." He told her, trying to be serious.

"How do you know I won't hide them from you?" She asked him, a look of mischief crossing her face. She had him there. Matthew tried to find an answer threatening enough to keep her from doing exactly that. Failing to come up with any, he shrugged.

"I don't." He said simply, before walking towards the change rooms, as Mia headed for the bleachers.