If You Love Me

Four: This Works For Us

Messing with the fork which sat in her hand, Nora spared a small sigh, trying to shift the knot which existed in the pit of her stomach. It wasn’t an unfamiliar feeling, for duration of the few days that had passed since she and Gerard had shared their latest ‘almost’ movement, the knot in her stomach had been immovable, and whilst she knew that the only way to get rid of it was speak to the defender, she had opted against it, not wanting to make things more awkward between the two of them. It wasn’t the first time, throughout the duration of their friendship, there had been a few awkward ‘almost’ moments, but they had a routine. They were awkward for a few days, avoiding one another, before they both agreed to that it was better for them to just put it behind them or pretend that it’d never happened at all.

Pushing the last of her meal around her plate, she allowed another soft sigh to fall out of her mouth.

“Are you going to tell us what is wrong or are we going to have to guess?”

Nora, who’d been focused on the plate ahead of her, flinched a little at the sound of her sister’s voice before she lifted her head, her blue eyes flicking between her and their mother. It was routine, since she and her sister had moved out, they had made a point of visiting their mother at least once a week, and whilst Nora knew that there was no ducking out of it, she regretted going, even if she knew that it meant a lot to her mother. She knew that she wasn’t the best company.

“Huh?” she spluttered softly.

Emilia, who was sat beside her younger sister, rolled her eyes. “You” she quipped “You’ve been quiet since you got here and that’s not like you, Nora. Normally we can’t shut you up. So, are you going to tell us what is on your mind or are we just going to have to guess?” she posed, her blue eyes narrowed on her little sister.

Nora offered her a look, briefly contemplating insisting that it was nothing, before she shook her head. “I’m being silly” she noted softly “It’s…it’s nothing to be worried about” she added, quietly fussing around with her fork.

Emilia spared her another soft look before she quietly shook her head, moving to pull the fork out of Nora’s hand. “Come on, Nora” she encouraged softly “You know that you can talk to us. What’s bothering you?” she posed, gently poking her side.

Nora spared a soft a glance down towards her sister’s hand before she shook her head. “I’m being silly” she repeated softly.

“There is something on your mind, Nora” Maria mused softly “You’ve not been yourself since you got here. So, why don’t we skip the part where you insist that it is nothing and get to the part where you tell us what is on your mind? You never know, we might be able to help” she added, flashing her daughter a warm encouraging smile. She knew that Nora was stubborn, when she wanted to, she had a habit of being a little distant, and Maria wanted to encourage her to open up. She wanted to know what was on her youngest daughter’s mind.

Nora blinked a couple of times, slightly surprised by the sound of her mother’s voice, before she quietly shook her head. “Gerard and I” she mumbled softly “We…we almost kissed” she babbled softly, her cheeks tinting a soft shade of pink.

Maria’s eyes widened a fraction, slightly surprised by her daughter’s words, before she tilted her head. “You did?” she posed lightly.

Nora nibbled on her lip softly before she nodded. “We did” she confirmed “We were at a party to celebrate their season and we were sitting outside waiting for a taxi to arrive. I don’t really know what happened, but all of a sudden we were just inches away from kissing. If it hadn’t of been for Leo, I am pretty certain that we would have done” she babbled softly, the blush on her cheeks darkening slightly.

Maria quietly mulled her words over for a few seconds before she shook her head, a small sigh falling out of her mouth. “Nora, sweetheart, when are you just going to admit it?” she posed softly, her voice soft and encouraging.


“Come on, Nora” Maria interrupted softly “You and him, you’ve been skirting around this for years, and still you’re no closer to getting it together. You care about him, sweetheart, it’s obvious, and I am sure that he feels the same way about you. I mean, I’ve not seen too much of him, but I’ve seen enough to know that that boy lights up around you” she added, her voice warm and encouraging. It wasn’t the first time, in the nearly 3 years that Gerard had been in Nora’s life, Maria had tried to encourage her to admit her feelings more than once, but still Nora shied away from it.

Nora, who’d moved to fiddle with the bottom of her shirt, shook her head, her blue eyes not straying away from her fingers. “You know how I feel about him” she murmured softly “But I don’t want to lose him, mama, and I think I will if I…if I try and push things. We’re good, mama, as we are, we’re good, and if we try and change things then I worry that we might mess things up. This works, even if it is awkward, and I’d rather we kept things the way they are rather than trying to push them to be something they’re not” she added, pulling at a loose thread on her shirt.

Emilia, who was watching her younger sister, shook her head. “You know he feels the same way, right?” she posed “Nora, I’ve seen the guy around you, it’s all over his face. Why not just take the chance on him?” she pressed encouragingly.

Nora offered her a soft look before she quietly shook her head, something which made Emilia sigh. “What are you going to do then?” she posed softly “Are you just going to not date for as long as Gerard is in your life?” she added.

Nora was quiet for a second, quietly mulling over her question, before she shook her head. “I will date” she mused softly “When I meet someone I like, I will date, it’s just not happened lately” she explained quietly before she pushed herself up to her feet, mumbling something about needing the bathroom before she padded out of her room, leaving her mother and sister alone.

Emilia watched her out of the room before she flicked her attention back towards her mother, offering her a small look which made Maria shake her head. She knew what Emilia was thinking, it was the same thing she had been thinking, but she knew that it wasn’t their place. Whatever happened between Nora and Gerard was between the two of them, and she knew that they couldn’t get involved, even if she did want to bump their heads together. She knew that they had to figure things out themselves.
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Thanks to FootieJo and Jayme112234 for the comments :)