Slow Dancing in the Darkness

69: It’s Just Me

“Leo!” Noah grinned as he sped into living room, his little arms wrapping around the argentine who sat on the couch, watching highlights of Barcelona’s last pre-season game. It had been a quiet afternoon, without Gabriela and the children around, it had given him a little space to put in place some of the final plans he had made, but he was glad that they were home. It had only been a few hours, but he had missed them.

“Noah” Lionel noted, setting his tablet down as he lifted the little boy into his lap “How was the park?” he posed.

“Great” Noah grinned “I went on the swings, and the slide, and mama even bought me ice cream” the little boy explained, his face bright with a contagious grin.

“She did?” Lionel posed.

“Chocolate” Noah grinned.

Lionel spared him a soft smile before he kissed the side of his head, dismissing him to go and play with his things just as Gabriela stepped into the room, Amelia balanced against her hip. “I’m sorry we weren’t here when we go back” she noted as she moved to sit beside her husband “Noah’s been a ball of energy since he got out of school and I thought I would take him out for a couple of hours. How was training?” she posed, her blue eyes peeking up at him shyly.

“It was fine” Lionel replied gently “We’re feeling pretty good and we’re ready to hit the ground running when we play the first match next weekend. Are you and Noah going to come to that?” he posed.

“He wants to” Gabriela smiled “And I am not going to be the one who tells him that he cannot see his Barca. I swear, that boy loves your football team more than he loves me sometimes” she teased.

Lionel smiled. “I doubt that, querida” he mused before he took a small breath, his dark eyes flashing up to hers “I spoke to David when I got back” he added.

Gabriela’s blue eyes widened, something which made Lionel sigh. “If you have a problem, Ela, you need to talk to me, not David” he murmured gently.

Gabriela sighed, her fingers messing with Amelia’s shirt.

“Gabriela” Lionel murmured, trying to elicit a response from her.

“You’re the one acting strange” Gabriela countered “You have been since you got back from the pre-season tour, and I am worried. You know about my past and yet, you’re still the one sneaking around” she added.

“I do know about your past, but you know that I am not your ridiculous ex-husband and I figured you could have a little more faith in me. This is stupid, Ela” he muttered.

Gabriela sighed. “You don’t think I know that?” she muttered, her blue eyes peeking down at Amelia who stirred a little in her sleep, her little nose wrinkling.

Lionel looked down at their daughter before he peeked up at his wife, his brown eyes softening a little. “Nena, I need you to put your faith in me” he murmured as he shifted a little closer to her, his hand gently brushing over Amelia’s head “You trust me with Amelia and with Noah, and you need to trust me with you too” he added.

Gabriela shifted a little, her eyes dropping to her lap.

Lionel shook his head. “What the heck are we doing then?” he muttered before he stepped out of the room.

Gabriela let out a small sigh and dropped her eyes to Amelia who shifted slightly in her arms, her big brown eyes staring up at her. Gabriela shook her head at the sight and placed a little kiss on the baby’s head, murmuring a small apology to the baby who cooed up at her.

Resting back against the bed, Lionel stared up at the white ceiling, his stomach aching a little. He’d known from the outset that it would take time, after Elliot, Gabriela was always going to be hesitant about trusting him, but he had hoped for a little more progress. They’d been in a relationship for over a year, married for just under a year, and he would have hoped that Gabriela had developed some sort of faith in him. He’d have thought that she would have figured out that all of his intentions towards her and their little family were good.

“Leo?” Gabriela’s voice was timid as she pushed the door open.

Lionel let out a small breath before he sat up, his brown eyes narrowed on her.

“I…I’m sorry” Gabriela murmured.

“This is ridiculous, Ela” he murmured as he pushed a hand back through his hair “We’re going in circles again and again over topics that we should have put to bed months ago” he muttered.

“I know…”

“Do you trust me?” Lionel interrupted.


“It’s simple, Ela” he muttered “You either do or you don’t. If you do, fantastic, but if not, then this is just futile, isn’t it? I would trust you with my life and I know that it’s not that easy for you, but it’s been 12 months. Am I not entitled to a little more credit?” he posed, his voice drifting between hurt and frustrated.

Gabriela swallowed a little before she nodded her head. “Alright” she murmured.


“You’re right” Gabriela noted, her voice nervous “I am hard on you and I am overbearing and overly nervous. I ruined the surprise of this place because I let Elena and Elliot get into my head and I hate that I didn’t just go with my gut. I know you, and I know, deep down that you don’t have a malicious bone in your body, but it’s me, Leo. I’m a worrier, I always have been, and after Elliot…it’s worse than ever. I do trust you, of course I do, I wouldn’t still be here if I didn’t, but you sneaking around like you have been…I’m just keeping my guard up. I let it fall last time and look what that got me” she rambled, trying to make him see things from her point of view.

Lionel drew his tongue over his lips before he reached for her hand, pulling her to stand between his legs. “You don’t have to have your guard up with me, Ela” he murmured “You don’t ever have to worry. I’m right where I want to be and that’s not just going to change. I love what we have here” he mused, ensuring that she was looking into his eyes “I love you” he insisted.

Gabriela nodded her head shyly. “I know” she murmured.

“I’m working on something for you” he admitted, trying not to give everything away “It’s something I want to do for you and you’ll have to wait a couple more weeks to find out what it is, but I swear to you, it’s not bad” he insisted.

Gabriela studied his expression for a moment before she smiled. “I know” she repeated softly.

“Ela, I love you” he repeated.

Gabriela smiled at his words and ducked down, kissing him gently. “I love you too” she murmured.

Lionel smiled and kissed her cheek gently. “I know” he mimicked softly.
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Thanks to Jayme112234 for the comment :)