When You Close Your Eyes

11: You Know That

Sparing a soft yawn into his hand, Lionel tossed onto his side, his eyes stinging with lack of sleep. It had been a long night, after his conversation with Isabelle, he had been quick to duck out of their home and make his way to Gerard’s, but still he hadn’t been able to fall asleep, regardless of how much he had tried, he hadn’t been able to shake the words that Isabelle had said from his mind.

It had hurt him, the idea that Isabelle thought he was merely wasting time with her, and he couldn’t quite shake the idea from his mind, not matter how much he tried to distract himself, he still found himself caught on the idea that Isabelle thought that of him.

Allowing another yawn to fall out of his mouth, he spared a soft look towards the clock which stood on the night stand before the sound of the door edging open caught his ears, causing him to roll onto his back, his dark eyes settling on Shakira who stood in the door way, a plate of food balanced in her hand.

“I didn’t mean to disturb” she mused softly “But I figured you’d be hungry” she added, settling the plate of toast on the night stand.

Lionel watched her for a couple of seconds before he pushed himself up slightly, offering her a soft nod before he mumbled out a soft ‘thank you’.

Shakira offered him a brief smile before she shook her head, moving to settle down on the bed beside him. “Do you want to talk about it?” she posed, her voice soft and kind. She knew that something had happened, the idea that Lionel found himself in her guest room as opposed to at home with Isabelle confided it, but she didn’t want to push him. It was their business, whatever had happened was between Isabelle and Lionel, and Shakira didn’t want to push too hard, even if she was curious as to why the argentine found himself in her guest room, she didn’t want to pry.

Lionel, who’d moved to nibble on some toast, startled a little at the sound of her voice before he shook his head, a soft sigh falling out of his mouth. “We’re struggling” he mumbled quietly “Me and Isa, things between us aren’t good right now, and we got into a fight, the latest in a long line” he added, a frown tugging at the corner of his mouth.

Shakira offered him a soft look before she shook her head. “What was it about?” she posed quietly.

Lionel shook his head. “I asked her what was wrong” he mumbled “We’ve not been ourselves for a couple of months and I asked her what was on her mind. She told me that she worried that after almost 4 years, we weren’t engaged or pregnant and then she admitted that that got her thinking” he added, his tone slightly sharp.

Shakira frowned a little at tone of his voice before she shook her head. “Thinking?” she posed.

Lionel let out a small snort before he shook his head. “She asked me what would happen if someone better for me came along” he muttered “After almost four years, she still thinks that there is a chance that I could just up and leave her, and that stings, Shakira. I love her, I’ve loved her for years and I know that she knows that, but yet still…still she thinks that I could do that to her” he added, his tone caught between hurt and angry.

Shakira allowed his words to hang around them for a couple of seconds before she shook her head, patting his shoulder softly. “She probably didn’t mean it like that” she noted softly “Leo, Isabelle loves you, you know that” she added softly.

Lionel mulled her words over for a couple of seconds before he shook his head. “I do know that” he confirmed softly “But hearing that…”

“It hurt” Shakira interrupted softly “Of course it did, but you know that that isn’t how she meant it. You asked her to tell you what the problem was, Leo, and when she did, you walked away from her” she added gently.

Lionel allowed her words to linger for a couple of seconds before he shook his head. “It hurt me” he mumbled softly “And last night…I just…I needed to get out of there” he added.

Shakira opened her mouth to reply but was cut off as the bedroom door swung open, allowing Gerard to pad inside, his youngest son balanced on his hip. “I am sorry to interrupt” he noted softly “But Shakira, the boys won’t settle for me” he added, peeking towards his girlfriend gently.

Shakira rolled her eyes playfully before she pushed herself to her feet, moving to collect the toddler out of Gerard’s arms. “I know that you’re hurt” she noted, looking towards Lionel softly “But perhaps, Isabelle is too” she added before she padded out of the room.

Lionel watched after her for a couple of seconds before he let out a small sigh, his eyes closing for a couple of seconds.

“You know, there is another reason I came up here”

Lionel, who’d drifted off slightly, startled at the sound of Gerard’s voice before he blinked his eyes open. “What?” he posed.

“Isabelle” the defender noted softly “I texted her last night when you showed up here and she’s downstairs. She has a bag of clean clothes for you” he added, a small smile playing at the corner of his mouth. He knew that they were struggling, for a little while, Lionel had been particularly cagey when it came to any mention of his relationship, but Gerard was hopeful, even if it appeared that Lionel wasn’t, the defender was sure that between the two of them, Lionel and Isabelle could fix a relationship that, for almost 4 years, had appeared brilliant.

Lionel tilted his head. “She’s here?” he posed softly.

Gerard nodded. “She told me to tell you that it is Ok if you don’t want to talk to her, she just wanted to make sure that you had a clean change of clothes” he explained softly.

Lionel quirked a brief smile, one that Gerard didn’t miss. “Hombre, I know it isn’t my place” the defender mused softly “But surely, it is worth trying to fix, no? Four years is a long time and if you just let go, then you run the risk of regretting it. You two are brilliant together. Talk to her” he added softly before he pushed himself to his feet, mumbling about needing to take a shower before he padded out of the room.

Lionel watched after him for a couple of seconds before he shook his head, moving to push himself up to his feet. He knew that Gerard had a point, their relationship was something which was worth fixing, but part of him worried that they wouldn’t manage it. Part of him was worried that he and Isabelle would merely end up hurt.
♠ ♠ ♠
Thanks to FootieJo for the comment :)