You Loved Me Once

69: The Both Of You

Resting a hand against her bump, Alba peeked around the airport terminal, her blue eyes searching for any sign of Lionel. It had been a couple of days, after their birthday, Argentina’s tournament had ended at the hands of Brazil, and with a long flight under his belt, Alba was sure that Lionel wanted nothing more than to head home and rest for a while. He was likely to be disappointed, like it always seemed to be with Argentina, it had been another nearly moment, and Alba knew that it would be on her boyfriend’s mind, even if he had tried to put a brave face on it when he’d called before he’d boarded his flight, she knew that he would be disappointed.

Rubbing her bump softly, she mumbled quietly to herself, trying to convince the baby to stop kicking before she felt a hand on the small of her back, causing her to startle. “You’re OK” Lionel’s voice mumbled as he pressed a kiss to her shoulder “I didn’t know you were coming to get me” he added, padding around her.

“It was a last minute call” Alba mumbled “I wasn’t going to come and then I heard you on the phone before you boarded and I changed my mind. Are you not happy to see me?” she posed softly.

Lionel quirked a small grin. “You know that I am” he mused warmly “But the whole idea of you working from home is that you’re relaxing, something you’re not doing if you’re in a car driving to the airport. I’d have made it back by myself” he insisted softly. He was pleased to see her, being face to face with Alba was significantly better than seeing her via his laptop screen or hearing her via the phone, but he hadn’t want her to go out of her way for him. He would have been more than happy to wait to see her.

Alba smiled. “Maybe I couldn’t wait to see you” she quipped “It’s been a month, Leo and although we’ve spoken through the phone, I’ve missed you” she shrugged softly. It was a little silly, since he’d left to join up with the Argentina squad, they’d spoken at least once a day, if not more, but still Alba had missed him, something which had in part led her to decide to collect him from the airport. It had been too long since they’d been together in the same room.

“Missed me, eh?” Lionel teased as he shouldered his carry-on, his hand collecting Alba’s.

“Don’t pretend that you didn’t miss me” Alba quipped as she padded alongside him “You’re the one who called me more often than I called you” she pointed out.

Lionel scoffed playfully, something which made Alba push his side slightly. “You know you missed me” she noted, a playful pout prominent on her face.

Lionel chuckled softly and leant over, kissing her temple gently. “You know I’ve missed you too” he murmured “The both of you” he added, his hand gently brushing against Alba’s bump which was rewarded with a swift kick from their daughter.

“Someone’s already a papa’s girl” Alba teased as they padded towards the luggage carousel.

Lionel smiled a little and followed after her, glad that they were together once more.

“Are you not finished yet?”

Alba, who’d been sat on the floor of their living room typing up an email to her boss, startled a little at the sound of Lionel’s voice, more than slightly surprised to hear it. It had been quick, almost as soon as they’d reached their home, he’d retired to their room in order to catch up on some sleep, and Alba had taken advantage of the time, using it to complete an article that wasn’t due for another couple of days.

Lionel, who was stood in the door way, shook his head a little, moving to sit beside her. “I didn’t mean to scare you” he mused.

“I thought you were sleeping” Alba countered.

“I was, but then I woke up and I figured I’d come and see if you were done. It’d be nice to catch up” he mused, stretching his legs out ahead of him.

“I’ve just sent my work off” Alba quipped.

Lionel nodded his head and moved to shift her laptop away from her, allowing her to get slightly more comfortable as he placed his arm around her waist. “Why are we sitting on the floor?” he posed as Alba rested her head on his shoulder.

“It’s where I seem most comfortable” she shrugged softly “I’ve tried my desk and the couch, but thus far, this is where I am at my least uncomfortable. Also, once I am down here, it’s pretty difficult to get back up again” she added.

Lionel smiled. “You’ve only got a little while left now” he murmured “She due what, the 28th of August?” he posed.

“She is” Alba confirmed “But knowing us, she’ll be late” she added, her blue eyes admiring the bump which was obvious despite the loose shirt she wore.

Lionel smiled. “She’ll show up when she’s ready” he fussed softly.

Alba nodded. “She will do” she confirmed “And we should be ready for her. Have you given any thought to a name yet?” she posed, her eyes closing contently. It had been a while, Alba couldn’t quite recall the last time she and Lionel had had a quiet moment together, and she was determined to enjoy them when they arose. It wouldn’t be too long before their relatives and friends descended upon them or their daughter made her first appearance.

Lionel shrugged. “I am sure we’ll think of one” he mused softly “What about a colour scheme for her nursery?” he posed.

“Something light” Alba mused “But I don’t want anything too pink. How about yellow or cream?” she posed.

“I am sure that I can handle that” he murmured softly.

Alba snorted, something which made him shift his hands, tickling her slightly. Alba jumped as his fingers brushed against her ribs and tried to squirm away, a series of giggles falling out of her mouth. “I am not the worst decorator, you know” he teased, his ears doused by her laughs.

“You tell that to our first apartment together” Alba squeaked, finally wiggling away from him.

Lionel rolled his eyes. “I am more than capable of doing this, Alba” he mused “Especially if you come up with what you want. I am sure that I will manage” he insisted.

Alba nodded. “I am sure you will too” she noted “How long’ve you got before you’re due back in training?” she posed.

“A couple of weeks” Lionel noted “They’ll want me in training by the middle of July so I can at least get a couple of pre-season games in ahead of the Spanish super cup” he explained.

“Then you’ll get to spend them decorating and building baby furniture” Alba grinned “As well as flicking through a baby name book to come up with a name for our little girl” she added.

Lionel pouted playfully, something which made Alba push his shoulder slightly. “You’ve got something better in mind?” she posed.

Lionel shook his head. “Not even slightly. I can’t wait to start preparing for her” he mused as he stretched his hand, resting it against her bump.

Alba watched him briefly before she turned her head, placing a small kiss on his cheek. “I’m glad you’re home” she murmured.

“I’m glad to be home” Lionel countered easily.

“And as happy as I am to see you, I am going to need your help up. Carrying your daughter around seems to mean I need to take at least a nap a day” Alba quipped.

Lionel offered her a boyish grin and pushed himself up, helping her back to her feet. “I’ll bring you dinner in a couple of hours” he mused.

Alba shook her head. “You really don’t have to do that” she mused as she straightened out her shirt “You already gave me a fantastic birthday when I did very little for you. I think you’ve already got the best boyfriend award sewn up” she commented.

Lionel smiled. “It’s really nothing” he insisted “And as for the birthday thing, you can just get me back next year” he teased.

Alba rolled her eyes, mumbling something about him being annoyingly sweet as she padded out of the room, heading towards their bedroom to lay down.

Lionel watched after her and shook his head, smiling to himself. He knew that it was fast, he and Alba had only been together for 11, almost 12 months, but he was already planning ahead. He was in no doubt, with Alba and bump was where he wanted to be, and whilst he knew that he needed to be tentative, he couldn’t stop himself from smiling a little at the idea of planning a proposal, one which had been inevitable from the moment that he and Alba had gotten back together. He knew better than to rush it, whilst Alba insisted that she had forgiven him, he knew that she was still unsure, but he knew it wouldn’t be long. Chances were that once their little girl had put in her first appearance, his patience would falter and he would ask the question that he knew Alba was looking for, even if she was dreading it too.
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Thanks to FootieJo and Jayme112234 for the comments :)