Slow Dancing in the Darkness

68: A Work In Progress

Placing his kit bag down beside the door, Lionel finished off the message he had been sending before he looked up, his brown eyes widening a little at the sight of Gabriela’s brother who stood in the hall away ahead of him, his arms folded across his chest. “David” he noted “I didn’t know you were in town” he added, eyeing the other man a little warily. He could see that there was something on David’s mind, his expression wasn’t as kind as it had been on the couple of times that he had spent time with Gabriela’s older brother, and it worried Lionel. He had thought that he had gotten off on the right foot with Evan and David.

“It’s a flying visit” David replied “I was in town on business and I thought I would stop by to visit Lala. Can I have a word with you?” he posed, offering the argentine a look.

Lionel furrowed his forehead, but nodded. “Of course. Where’s Ela?” he posed.

“She took Noah and Amelia to the park” David replied “I said I would let you know when you got back” he added.

Lionel nodded. “Alright” he agreed.

David nodded his head and led him through to the living room, sitting down in the armchair across from the couch where Lionel sat down, his brown eyes warily watching the older man. “I know you love my sister” David started tentatively. He felt a little bad, as far as he could tell, Lionel had nothing but good intentions towards his sister, but he wanted to do it. He wanted Lionel to know in no uncertain terms that there was consequences if David found out that he had done the same thing as Elliot.

Lionel frowned. “What’s going on, David?” he posed.

David shook his head. “Lala’s getting nervous, Leo” he admitted gently “She says you keep going off to meetings and she’s worried. I don’t buy it for a second, I think you love her far too much for that, but I just thought you ought to know that. Elliot’s favourite excuse to not come home to her and Noah was that he needed to work late or go to meetings and you using the same line is getting at her” he explained.

Lionel mulled his words over for a moment before he shook his head. “Does she have no faith in me?” he muttered.

“She got hurt, Leo” David defended softly “Badly hurt by the first guy she loved and she’s nervous. I thought she loved Elliot, but with you, it’s something else entirely and she doesn’t want to lose that” he insisted.

“And she’s not going to” Lionel replied, his voice a little irked. He didn’t like being accused of something he had never even thought of doing. “David, I have no intention whatsoever of hurting your sister and I wish people could just trust me with her. I am not Elliot and I am starting to get sick of people making comparisons. That asshole hurt her and I am not going to” he insisted, his voice tired and frustrated. He knew that people were going to be wary, after Elliot, he didn’t blame Gabriela’s family for being unsure about him, but he was getting tired of the comparisons. He didn’t quite know what he could do to prove to them that he wasn’t like the lawyer.

David sighed. “I am sorry, Leo” he noted gently “I just can’t watch her get hurt again. Can you tell me why you’ve been going to meetings?” he posed gently.

Lionel tilted his head back, frustration on his features. “I am doing something for her” he admitted “She told me when we were at your cousin’s wedding that she never really got a proper wedding day and I have been, with the help of a friend of ours, putting plans in place to give it to her” he noted as he turned to face the older man “I want to make this work, David” he added firmly.

David studied him for a moment before he let a small smile stretch across his face. “She really did get lucky with you, didn’t she?” he mused.

“I wish she could see it that way” Lionel countered with a small shake of his head “It’s been a year and still, all she sees is what Elliot did and not me and what I could do. David, I just want her faith in me” he admitted gently.

“She’ll get there” David assured him softly.

Lionel nodded. “I hope so” he murmured.

David offered him a small smile. “You’re really going to do that for her?” he posed.

Lionel nodded his head. “It’s been a year and I figured it would be a nice way to celebrate that fact. The last couple of months had been turbulent and I wanted to show her what my intentions are good. I like what we have going on here and I wanted to be the one who could give her a day that she could look back on in years to come and smile about” he noted.

David smiled. “It’s a wonderful idea, Leo, and if you need anything me and my wife would be more than happy to help you out” he insisted.

“I only have one favour to ask” Lionel noted.

“Anything” David noted.

“I need you to convince her to trust me, David” he noted with a look towards the older man “I need you to tell her that I am not going to do the horrible things she thinks I am” he insisted.

David nodded. “I can give it a shot” he noted “But it’s something that’s just going to take time. She does trust you, Leo, and she knows she’s being irrational, but it’s just a work in progress. She must trust you, she lets you watch Noah and she trusted you enough to have Amelia with you. She’s just…

“Complicated” Lionel shrugged “I know” he added.

“She really does love you” David insisted “I’ve never actually seen her this content before” he added.

Lionel smiled graciously. “I’d like to think that I have made a difference for her” he noted.

“You have” David assured him “And whilst she can be a pain in the backside, she really doesn’t want to lose things between you. You’re the best thing for her, and for Noah, and I have no doubt that that will continue” he noted before he jutted a hand out, allowing Lionel to shake it. He trusted the argentine, from what David had seen of him, his intentions towards Gabriela were nothing but good, and he hoped that Gabriela let him stay around. He was the best thing that had happened to her and David would have hated to watch the two of them fall apart over something as simple as putting a little faith in a man who only wanted to do the best for her.
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Thanks to Luuuc_19 and Jayme112234 for the comments :)