Slow Dancing in the Darkness

13: Stop Worrying, Just For Tonight

Standing outside of Gabriela’s apartment, Lionel smiled to himself, a little excited at the prospect of seeing her again. He knew that it was silly, he’d only seen her a few hours previous when she had agreed to come to his match, but he couldn’t quite stop himself from grinning at the prospect of seeing her again, a feeling he had been getting more and more frequently since she had stumbled into his life. It was too quick for him to consider the notion that he was in the love with her, 2 weeks was far too little time to reach that conclusion, but he was already pretty certain that he was heading that way. Even the thought of her was enough to make him smile and he knew that that was a good thing. Adjusting the bag that he held in his hand, he lightly tapped the door before he stepped back, patiently waiting for her to open the door.

“Lionel” Gabriela’s voice was soft as the wooden door drew open, her slight frame leaning against the door frame “I wasn’t expecting to see you” she added.

“I didn’t know what you had planned for after the match, so I thought I would pop over. Are you busy?” he posed, offering her a smile.

Gabriela shook her head. “Not at all. I was just getting Noah ready for bed, but now that you’re here, I think I’ll have a little more trouble” she commented as she turned her back on him, leading him into her apartment. It was a little late, with player presentations in addition to the game itself, Gabriela had spent hours at the ground, but that didn’t mean she wasn’t thrilled to see him. After another run in with her former husband, seeing Lionel was the only thing that could make her night a little better.

“I have something for him” Lionel commented as he quietly closed the door behind.

Gabriela smiled. “If you wait just there, I’ll go and get him” she mused before she stepped out of the room, returning moments later with a sleepy looking Noah in her arms. “He’s not really awake right now, he’s up way past his bed time, but I know he would never forgive me if you were here and he didn’t get to see you” she explained, setting Noah tentatively onto his feet.

Lionel smiled at the sight of the little boy who was dressed in his pajamas and shuffled towards him, crouching down ahead of him. “You did a good job of looking after your madre, Noah” he explained gently, shuffling the carrier bag forwards “And I thought, before you went to bed, you’d want this” he added, handing the bag over to the little boy who was quick to pull out its content, a sleepy smile filling up his face.

“I love it” he grinned, holding the red and blue material up to Gabriela who smiled back at him.

“I didn’t quite know what you’d want on the back, so I went with my name and number, is that Ok?” Lionel posed, turning the shirt around to show off the yellow lettering which was stuck on the back.

Noah wrinkled his nose, letting out a small yawn, before he nodded his head, shuffling into the footballer’s arms to offer him a small hug. Lionel startled a little, but wrapped his arms around him, gifting him the hug in return. “Thank you, Lionel” he whispered softly before he let his head fall onto Lionel’s shoulder, quietly falling asleep. Gabriela, who had been watching, smiled gently and stepped towards her son, carefully picking him up. “I should go and put him down for the night” she smiled, gently resting Noah’s head on her shoulder “Why don’t you put the kettle on and I will be with you in a second” she noted before she padded out of the room, allowing Lionel to move through to the kitchen, his seemingly immovable grin on his face.

“So, what did you think of the match?” Lionel smiled as he placed a mug of tea down beside Gabriela, his lips lightly kissing her cheek. It was quiet, with Noah asleep, it was just the pair of them and it pleased him. As much as he adored Gabriela’s son, he liked being alone with her and wanted to take as many opportunities as he could to be alone with her.

“It was a good game” Gabriela replied “Not that I would know any different, but I am sure your team scoring 3 goals was a good thing” she grinned.

Lionel nodded his head. “It was” he enthused “Did Noah enjoy it?” he posed gently.

Gabriela shifted a little, not wanting to talk about Elliot, and nodded, something which didn’t go unnoticed by the argentine.

“Did he not like the game?” he posed.

“Of course he did” Gabriela noted “Noah’s utterly taken with you and everything you do” she added.

“Then what’s with the look, Gabby?” Lionel posed, shifting so that he looked at her properly.

Gabriela pushed her hair out of her eyes before she sighed, peeking at her lap. “Elliot…the ass…he was at the game and Noah and I ran into him.” She admitted gently.

Lionel shifted. “He was there?” he posed.

“Working, apparently, but he had Elena with him and it was as awful as it ever is, but you should probably know that Noah may have given the game away to his papi” she explained softly, her blue eyes looking up at him slightly.

“Noah told Elliot that we’re seeing each other?” he posed, not quite sure what to think.

“No, he told him that a man named Lionel bought us tickets to a Barcelona game and that Lionel sleeps with me. Elliot doesn’t know that it is you, but one look at Noah in a Messi shirt and the pieces ought to fall into place. A horrible person he might be, but Elliot’s not a complete idiot” she explained, her hand fiddling with his which had started to rub her leg, trying to offer her some sort of comfort.

“You’re worried about him finding out?” Lionel posed, kissing her shoulder gently.

“I know how that goes down” Gabriela replied “Elliot pouts, he complains that I should focus more on Noah and not on boyfriends, and then he gets his own way again. He switches offices, cities, and because of our divorce settlement, I have little choice but to go with him” she explained.

Lionel sighed softly and rested his head on her shoulder, closing his eyes softly. “I don’t want you to go” he mumbled.

Gabriela smiled softly at his statement. “You know, that’s a pretty big thing to say after 2 weeks” she teased.

“It’s true” Lionel replied softly.

Gabriela laughed softly and leant back, kissing him gently. “You’re very sweet” she smiled gently.

Lionel smiled. “Sweet enough that you could stop worrying right now and show me you room? We can worry about Elliot in the morning” he enthused, gently pulling her back to her feet. Gabriela smiled and followed along with him.

She liked the way he could take her mind off of things.
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Thanks to Jayme112234, Luuuc_19 and FootieJo for the comments :)